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Another anti-trans bill advances

This just makes me angry.

Transgender Texas children, their parents, medical groups and businesses have vocally opposed many of the bills lawmakers are pursuing. Equality Texas CEO Ricardo Martinez said Texas has filed more anti-LGBTQ bills this session than any other state legislature.

“It’s insulting,” Indigo said. “These lawmakers think that we don’t know what we want with our own bodies and we’re not able to say what we want and mean it.”

House Bill 1399 would prohibit health care providers and physicians from performing gender confirmation surgery or prescribing, administering or supplying puberty blockers or hormone treatment to anyone under the age of 18. The House Public Health Committee advanced the bill Friday.

Senate Bill 1311 by Sen. Bob Hall, R-Edgewood, would revoke the medical license of health care providers and physicians who perform such procedures or prescribe such drugs or hormones to people younger than 18. The Senate State Affairs Committee advanced that bill Monday.

The Senate last week passed Senate Bill 29, which would prevent public school students from participating in sports teams unless their sex assigned at birth aligns with the team’s designation. While that bill would only affect students in K-12 schools, two similar bills in the House would include colleges and universities in that mandate.

SB 29 has been referred to the House Public Education Committee, which is slated to meet Tuesday and hear testimony on identical legislation that was introduced in the lower chamber.

It’s unclear, though, whether any of this year’s measures targeting transgender Texans have a chance at getting through both chambers. Last session, Dade Phelan, the Beaumont Republican who is now House Speaker, demonstrated a lack of appetite for bills restricting rights for LGBTQ Texans.

“It’s completely unacceptable,” he said at the time. “This is 2019.”

See here, here, and here for some background. Unfortunately, it’s not 2019 anymore, and it’s clear what the Republicans in the Legislature as well as Dan Patrick and Greg Abbott want. I missed SB1311’s advancement on Monday, authored by a guy who thinks that every one of these trans kids that have told him and the rest of the Lege in no uncertain terms how these bills are directly harmful to them is “just going through a phase”. This article leads off with the experience of Indigo Giles, whose mom is my friend Mandy Giles. I honestly don’t know how you can hear what people like Indigo have to say about their lives and themselves and conclude that they must be confused or deluded or lying, but then I’m familiar with the concept of “empathy”. What I do know is that Indigo and everyone like Indigo needs more than weak reassurances and the biennial need to make a road trip to Austin to defend their humanity to the likes of Bob Hall. The one way they’re going to get that is electing more Democrats in Texas. Say it with me now: Nothing is going to change until our state government changes.

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  1. Mandy Giles says:

    Thank you for bringing attention to these bills, Charles. I just found out that SB 1646 moved out of the State Affairs Committee yesterday. 6 senators on that committee felt that the definition of child abuse should include gender-affirming care, including puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and surgeries – on the same level as child pornography, sexual abuse, physical harm, substance abuse, and forcing a child into marriage. How on EARTH is providing life-saving care for my child on the same level as these definitions? Senators Powell and Zaffarini deserve our thanks for voting no.

  2. So sorry Mandy. This is Salem witch trial level ignorance run amok. This shit has to stop!

  3. Bill Daniels says:

    There is obviously a correlation between having leftist parent(s) and the transgender phenomenon. I question whether there is causation there, too. How fortuitous, for example, is it that Mandy has TWO transgender kids? That gets her a place where she belongs, it gets her a cause, fighting for her ‘trans kids.’ She’s got a built in peer group, a built in network. She has purpose that she would not have if her kids were straight and normal.

    I wonder, in these activist groups, how many of the parents are conservatives, or Trump supporters? Any of them?

    And a couple of question for anyone here. Can we agree that someone who identifies as a transgender has a medical issue? The question is, is it a mental disorder, like anorexia, schizophrenia or Munchhausen’s by proxy, or is it a physical birth defect, like Down’s syndrome, or being born with no arms?

  4. Ross says:

    Being trans is far less scary than your anencephaly, Bill. What’s your point? Do you think the transgender “disorder” can be “cured” with therapy? I know, your cure would be to have them all commit suicide so you don’t have to deal with the concept that some people are different than you, and that it’s OK to be different.

    I’ve known a couple of transgender folks in the last 40+ years. They both had the wherewithal to go through hormone treatment and have gender reassignment surgery, and were very happy the last time I saw them.

    Your problem Bill, for which you need to seek therapy, is that the concept of someone being different than you is troubling. You can’t understand why anyone would want to be different than you. Get to the root of that belief, and you will be a much happier person.

    I would also point out that the medical care that parents, their child, and their doctors decide is appropriate is no one’s business but theirs, so quit interfering.

  5. Bill, that is a bizarre and unkind thing to say. You know nothing of Mandy and her children, and you know nothing of gender identity. I don’t know what motivated you to say these nasty things, but you should be ashamed of yourself.

  6. racymind says:

    I don’t come here as often as I used to, but the hateful transphobic comment by Bill Daniels is probably the most disgusting comment I’ve ever seen on Off the Kuff.

  7. Thomas says:

    Kuff, it may be worth your while to consider a comment moderation and/or deletion policy for obvious trolls.

  8. Kibitzer says:


    How about more *quality speech* from deep thinkers and upstanding denizens like yourself to counterbalance odious speech from the badies, not to mention the packs of big bad wolves roaming the realm?

    First time you comment here (in months as far as this Kibitzer’s recollection goes, correct him if mistaken), contributing barely a few seconds of your valuable time (a 20-word one-liner, no more), and you want to tell Kuff how to run his blog.

    As you ought to be aware, Kuff has been at it for more than a decade. Almost two. What is your claim to public online service by comparison?

    As for Bill Daniels in particular, why don’t you just ignore him if his verbal excretions are too revolting for your sensibilities? Further: there are gas masks for excessive stink, not to mention thick skin against darts, figuratively talking. Surely, there is a variety of ways to cope with unpleasantness. Others have even managed to find the occasional pearl of wisdom in the moral morass.

    Second, if your mental knee-jerk approach to policing someone else’s forum is to be accommodated, who gets to bestow the “Troll” designations? — Individual lurkers who can’t be bothered to make a positive contribution of their own — not to mention exposing themselves to criticism — but nevertheless want to suppress the speech of others based on personal taste preferences?

    Again, KUFF has rendered this great public service for many years. It’s *his* blog. If anyone, it’s up to him to decide who should get silenced, or corralled, or put in the pillory.

    Leaving aside the normative issue of content-based curtailment of speech, there is also additional time and work involved running an effective censorship program. Is that additional effort “worth it”? Have you even considered that simple truth in hosting an online news and discussion forum? – That selective censorship is labor intensive?

    On a more practical and constructive note, you could look at the verbal output of the usual suspects here as real-time evidence of what you are up against; — material that may also allow you to assess how the code words, punch lines, and talking points from the right-wing propaganda machine are trickling down to the bottom. And you can also observe how other members of the OTK Kommentariat choose to engage with this stuff.

    Kibitzer is looking forward to an intelligent substantive contribution of your own. Surely someone of your caliber is capable of such. All it takes is a little good will, time, and effort.

    You, too, can help make the blogosphere a better place, Thomas.

  9. Bill Daniels says:

    I don’t know whether this will help calm, or further incite the poop storm I apparently caused, but I’ll say this:

    I made some assumptions about Mandy based on nothing more than a story that included her, and watching the video of her speaking at the Capitol, along with maybe about 30-40 minutes of others testifying, including the flamboyant pastor rocking the collar/sleeveless look. I probably should not have speculated about Mandy, and assumed/ascribed motives that, as Kuff correctly points out, I couldn’t possibly know for sure. OK, duly chastised.

    I will stand by my general questions on the subject, however. They don’t seem unreasonable when we consider that we’re talking about making life altering decisions for children. If transgenderism seems to almost exclusively occur in leftist circles, maybe that deserves some examination.

    @ Wolf con queso y nopales:

    I agree with your basic point, that apologetics and the Socratic method benefit everyone. Being able to successfully present and frame a policy position, whatever it might be, to know what the counter arguments are and to be able to successfully dismantle them, is a skill set that transfers well to many areas in life.

    And who knows….maybe somebody will be swayed by an argument they see presented here. That’s even happened to me a few times.

  10. Jen says:

    @Kibitzer- Thomas only suggested that moderation is in order for obvious troll shitheads like “Bill Daniels”. I agree, and I don’t understand why Mr. Kuffner allows his blog to be used as a neo-Nazi propaganda platform. “Bill” has seen that he can get away with anything, no matter how horrible, and so he pushes it just because he can.
    As for you, Kib, I didn’t think badly of you, until now. You went way overboard attacking Thomas. “Bill Daniels” doesn’t offer anything that can’t be googled up on any racist website, and he is the only one I have seen that deserves, over and over again, to be kicked off of this forum. If you miss him, just go to Big Jolly, if you like stink.

  11. Jen says:

    I neglected to mention that having a toxic troll that posts constantly on this board means that other voices are not heard, because they have better sense than I do and just stay away. If a race-baiting, queer-baiting gotcha troll sets up shop at your favorite watering hole on Wednesdays, you avoid what is otherwise a pleasurable experience, and do something else on Wednesdays. It works the same at OTK. I have better, happier days when I don’t engage with this blog. I am sure numerous others have come to the same conclusion.

    All because of one hate merchant, who is somehow allowed a free pass.

  12. C.L. says:

    Bill is the equivalent of OTK click bait, making outrageous comments and taking the occasional (morally and socially) abhorrent position merely to create outrage and spark further divisive comments, and for the most part, is successful at same. I’ve said it multiple times on this forum, the more folks react to his silly business, the bolder he becomes and the more he posts and the more redonkulous statements he makes. If folks would just ignore him, he’d move on.

  13. Jen says:

    @C.L. – I agree with you, to a point. I don’t think he is going to go away. I see he is amusing himself, but I also see a recruitment agenda.

    I am reminded of a male friend I had years ago, who worked construction jobs with a crew of white guys from Liberty County, they came from a rural poverty background. He told me about a subcontractor who came onto the site, who was an open Ku Klux Klan member, who had recruited several of the crew to join the Klan while he was there, using the standard racist talking points, the same as “Bill” uses all the time.

    I am also reminded of a case you may remember, where two gay men were found shot to death in the foyer of their home which had been set on fire to cover the crime. They were last seen at a rally for then-candidate Annise Parker. Police surmised they had been followed home from the rally and killed. This is the type of crime that the Klan and other White Identity groups have branched out into, not just race-based anymore.

    I don’t understand why the owner of this blog allows a hate group spokesman to use his blog as a tool to spread a dangerous pack of lies in order to encourage others to adopt his repulsive ideas.

  14. C.L. says:

    Jen (and Manny), don’t let him trigger you.

  15. Thomas says:


    I don’t know whether to be honored or disturbed that you took the time to type out such a lengthy and supercilious post in response to my short comment, even going so far as to count the words in it.

    I have been reading Kuff’s blog (and its comments) on an almost-daily basis since the early 2000s; however, I must admit that I choose not to be a frequent commenter here.

    So you will only occasionally see posts from me, such as my previous one regarding potential comment moderation. It was merely a suggestion to Charles in light of what can be perceived to be particularly venomous and inflammatory posts by certain posters on this and other comment threads that serve no point other than to disrupt and degrade the discourse of OTK’s comment section.

    As it is his blog, Charles is free to ignore my suggestion, just as I have chosen to ignore the balance of your haughty jeremiad.

    Have a good day.