Letter: Tax dollars will be used to defend proposed anti-trans legislation
It is such a strange thing, that anti-discrimination legislation never passed because it could end up costing the state money, but legislation discriminating against transgender youth is worth defending regardless of the cost?
I have a background studying research as relates to transgender and queer youth in medicine and education. I do this as part of my work being a professional trainer and policy consultant for organizations to achieve better outcomes for patients and students. When you engage in this work, you can’t present information based on your feelings. Everything has to be cited, sourced, and scrutinized for doctors and administrators.
I highly recommend individuals read the NCAA's 38-page report on transgender athletes published in 2011. This is a look at all of the data related to science, ethics, and law that sports policy experts examined thoroughly and made a conclusion that allowing trans athletes to compete was fair. The Olympics made their own similar conclusion, and these are non-partisan organizations. Fair Play, a report by Center for American Progress, showcases the harm legislation like HB 1298 has had in other states for both cisgender and trans girls.
- Sponsors of North Dakota's transgender athletes bill have ties to anti-LGBT organizations
Letter: North Dakota GOP continues to reveal its homophobic intentions Anti-trans athlete bill is another example of the homophobic underpinnings of the North Dakota GOP.
Letter: As medical professionals, we are appalled at ND transgender bill If North Dakota adds language into the Century Code that openly discriminates against an individual’s identity, the state sends a clear message that they don’t respect mental health or suicide rates in our state.
As Rob Port said, these are conversations we should be having, but the answer doesn’t come from government overreach and sweeping bans. Sen. Jason Heitkamp , R-Wahpeton, often quoted Donna Lopiano, a legend for women in sports throughout her career. While the issues are complex, Lopiano advocates against any kind of blanket ban: https://womenssportspolicy.org/ . I have to assume Heitkamp will be voting no, given his respect for Lopiano.
I get that we've been hearing horror stories of trans athletes for the last few months, often looking at the girls in Connecticut, which discounts the tens of thousands of trans athletes who don’t win or aren’t competitive to look at the very very few who find some success. This wasn’t a problem in North Dakota and hasn’t been since 2015 when we allowed trans athletes to compete. Even if this was a problem, which it isn't, we could just ban over performing trans athletes on a case-by-case basis rather than a ban based on misinformed speculation.
North Dakota has always been about local control, but this sweeping ban is taking away the agency of our local sports associations, teams and schools with no actual evidence for benefit. These measures will lose significant state funding and cost taxpayers millions in losing court costs if actually approved for law. It is such a strange thing, that anti-discrimination legislation never passed because it could end up costing the state money, but legislation discriminating against transgender youth is worth defending regardless of the cost?
In 2020, the NDGOP passed their resolutions that included “LGBT practices are unhealthy and dangerous, sometimes endangering or shortening life and sometimes infecting society at large.” While the NDGOP leadership and our governor condemned those statements, this bill is right in line with them. I get that the trans condition is a new thing for people, but let's keep having conversations and let our sports organizations and schools determine what's best for our students, not our legislators. Testimony can be provided here: https://www.legis.nd.gov/legend/committee_hearings/testimony/public-testimony/1006/
Seidler is the LGBTQ+ care coordinator for Canopy Medical Clinic in Fargo and does policy outreach through school systems with the Community Uplift Program.