According to the National Institution of Health, data indicate that 82% of transgender individuals have considered killing themselves and 40% have attempted suicide, “with suicidality highest among transgender youth.”
The growing need to appropriately and lovingly support these young people as they work their way to adulthood in a nation where many are hostile to their identities is evidenced by the crisis being experienced here in California related to suicide among transgender youth.
An Axios report released in December 2022, painted a dire picture revealing 54% of trans and nonbinary youth surveyed in California, “seriously considered suicide,” and 19% of those surveyed said they actually “attempted suicide” in the past year.
We can not turn a blind eye to their plight. For this reason, I applaud the action of Attorney General Rob Bonta who, at the end of June, joined 16 other attorneys general in an amicus brief in support of the Ludlow School Committee’s efforts to create a safe and supportive environment for transgender children and all students.
The Ludlow School, located in Massachusetts, is facing a challenge to its policy that seeks to prevent the unnecessary disclosure of a student’s gender identity.
In the AG’s friend-of-the-court brief, they reiterated the role of states in supporting “safe, inclusive school environments that help all children learn, thrive, and grow into contributing members of society.”
In announcing the amicus brief, Bonta stressed the importance of respecting all students’ identities including those who are transgender.
“We believe in nurturing a culture of understanding and acceptance that keeps students feeling safe, diminishes mental health risks, and sets up all students for success,” said Bonta.
Not surprisingly, the case against the Ludlow School was brought by a pair of conservative groups, the Massachusetts Family Institute and the Child and Parental Rights Campaign joined together in a symbiotic pact rooted in discrimination.
To get a sense of the rabid homophobia associated with this group consider this extreme post on its website that reads, “At this point, it cannot be denied that Massachusetts schools are actively indoctrinating students in progressive gender ideology, and the state is medicalizing them with experimental treatments. The communication goes so far as to claim the school is targeting children 17 years of age and under for medical treatments related to sex for reassignment surgeries or gender transition and using taxpayer dollars to pay for it.
I can never get used to conservatives exploiting children to further their political agenda even at the expense of destroying childrens’ lives. I know there will be those who may argue that it is religious and not political. Well to those I say, religious freedom does not give anyone the right to force their religious beliefs on others.
Perhaps these judgemental people should devote the time they probably don’t spend reading their bible or other religious doctrines and use it instead to stay information on scientific research in this area. Here are a couple of places to start: Among transgender children, gender identity as strong as in cisgender children, study shows; Few Transgender Children Change Their Minds After 5 Years, Study Finds; Scientists Have Carried Out the Biggest Ever Study on Transgender Children—Here’s What They Found; Young Trans Children Know Who They Are.
I am sure regardless of how much affirming and objective research is provided on this issue many conservatives will never change their minds. In that regard, we must consider the source as these are many of these same folks who don’t believe in the changing climate or that Donald Trump lost the election.
Of course, this is just my opinion. I’m keeping it real.