Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Anti-trans bills further oppress transgender minors

Three anti-transgender bills passed by Wisconsin State Assembly continue to endanger, harm transgender youth
Sophia Scolman

The Wisconsin State Assembly passed three bills relating to the access to gender-affirming care by transgender minors and the ability for transgender individuals to play high school and collegiate sports according to an article from Fox6 Milwaukee.

The first sports-related bill prevents transgender high school athletes from competing on teams that don’t match with their biological sex. The second does the same but for collegiate athletes. The third outlaws doctors from performing gender-affirming surgery on patients who are minors.

Though Gov. Tony Evers has stated he will veto these bills when they reach his desk according to Fox6, these bills are a direct attack on transgender minors and adults across the state of Wisconsin. Nobody deserves to be attacked and questioned, especially not based on their sex, gender or identity. But, across the United States, many politicians have started a campaign against the LGBTQIA+ community and especially transgender individuals.


Twenty-two state governments have passed laws or policies banning access to gender-affirming care for minors and roughly a third of all transgender youth across the country live in a state that bans gender-affirming care according to the Human Rights Campaign. These states are passing such laws and policies by criminalizing and blocking care as a whole. Some states such as Oklahoma, Texas and South Carolina have considered banning gender-affirming care for transgender individuals until the age 26 years old, according to the Human Rights Campaign.

These attacks all across the country have made it difficult for members of the community to live their lives freely.

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Gender-affirming care is critical to allow transgender individuals to be able to fully live their lives. Evidence suggests improved mental and physical health when people receive the care they need, according to a statement from the Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine.

Gender affirming hormone therapy that helps induce characteristics of an individuals desired gender and sex is shown to help improve the quality of life and mental health of transgender teens, according to the statement. Without gender-affirming care, the situation would be dire for many trans youth.

If someone is legally forced to live a life they don’t identify with and are made to feel like they are an outsider, forced to pretend to be something they are not, life would naturally be bleak. When legislators force transgender individuals out of their identity and keep them from being who they are, their mental health decreases significantly, according to the statement.

Additionally, lack of gender-affirming care can significantly impact transgender youth that come from minority backgrounds, according to the statement. Oftentimes when gender-affirming care isn’t available in a certain state, families that support the transition will relocate or take their child to a state where care is more readily available according to the statement. When families who come from a less privileged background and aren’t able to afford relocation, patients will often turn to potentially dangerous situations to obtain the care they desire.

Gender-affirmation doesn’t just relate to the physical, more medical transition, either. It can often be mental too. In the media today, there has been a significant rise in the debate over whether or not trans-athletes should be allowed to compete in high school and college sports. This debate is also extremely harmful to the mental health of trans-youth according to an article from the Cap Times.

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The argument behind preventing biological males or females from competing in the opposite gender of sport — regardless of their gender identity — is based on the idea of supposed “fairness,” according to the article. Many politicians and even some athletes themselves think transgender athletes, specifically transgender women, have an advantage when competing due to their biological sex according to the article.

This argument is clearly held in Wisconsin as the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association has a policy which states, “An MTF student must have one calendar year of medically documented testosterone suppression therapy to be eligible to participate on a female team, consistent with WIAA policy.”

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Children and teens shouldn’t have to spend their time worrying about whether or not they should be allowed to play on a sports team that fits their gender. It should just be a given. Transgender men are men and transgender women are women. That identity should not be questioned. This so-called “crisis” with transgender athletes making sports unfair for cisgender athletes is blown completely out of proportion.

Banning transgender individuals from competing with those of their same gender will only further marginalize and oppress them. The last thing trans youth need is to be made to feel like there is something wrong with being who they are and expressing their true identity.

Sammie Garrity ([email protected]) is a freshman studying journalism and political science.

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