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A Republican state lawmaker in Alabama has been accused of liking a transgender adult performer’s tweet, just a week after voting in favor of a bill to make it a felony for transgender youth under age 19 to receive gender-affirming health care.
Alabama State Sen. Tom Whatley (R-Auburn) allegedly liked an explicit tweet by a Philadelphia-based performer known as “Bambi Blonde” or “Baphomet Barbie,” with the Twitter handle @bblgumbaphomet, whose profile name is listed as “Bambi Hardcore TG 18+,” and describes themself as an “enbi [nonbinary] trans girl faerie princess.” Their Twitter feed includes a host of short “teaser” videos showing transgender women engaged in sexual acts.
According to LGBTQ Nation, Bambi posted a nude picture of their chest with the caption: “Love my new, fat, G-cup tiddies.”
Whatley’s official Twitter account showed up in the list of Twitter users who had “liked” the post, according to a screenshot obtained by the LGBTQ website.
Bambi later tweeted another photo with a caption, in apparent reference to the controversy, reading: “US Senator (sic) approved tiddies and dick.”
LGBTQ Nation claims it asked Whatley why he liked the tweet. He did not respond, but un-liked the tweet in question.
The fact that Whatley — or someone operating his work Twitter account — was allegedly looking at an explicit adult-themed Twitter page on government time may raise some eyebrows in the state, especially since Whatley was one of 23 Republican lawmakers to vote for SB 10, the Senate version of a bill to bar trans youth from receiving gender-affirming care.
The bill would make it a felony — punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $15,000 fine — for doctors to prescribe puberty blockers or hormones, or recommend gender confirmation surgery (which, in practice, rarely occurs before a person is 18 and considered a legal adult), one any person under age 19.
The Senate bill has since been sent to the House of Representatives, which passed HB 1, its own version of the ban on transition-related care. If the House approves the Senate bill, or the bill goes to conference and gets approved by each chamber, it would then head to Gov. Kay Ivey (R) for her signature into law.
If signed into law, Alabama would become the first state in recent years to explicitly ban access to transgender health care such as puberty blockers, and the only state to ban legal adults (18-year-olds are considered adults, capable of voting, serving in the military, and making other legal decisions, under American law) from accessing medical treatments, even if hormones or surgery are recommended to treat their gender dysphoria.
The bill also contains provisions that would force school officials to “out” transgender students to their parents if a teacher or administrator believes a student is struggling with their gender identity or objects to a student’s failure to conform to gender norms or behaves contrary to traditional gender-based stereotypes.
The Senate version also prevents therapists from providing “talk therapy” to discuss a youth’s feelings of gender dysphoria, while the House version seeks to create an exemption for therapists.
“We don’t want [therapists] affirming that ‘Hey, yeah, you’re right, you should be a boy if you are a born a female,'” Sen. Shay Shelnutt (R-Trussville), the lead sponsor of the bill, said during debate.
Whatley was the senator who had offered an amendment, similar to provisions in the House bill, to exempt counselors from being prosecuted under the law, but when that amendment was defeated, he voted in favor of the bill.
Even though the Senate and House bills condemn puberty blockers as “dangerous and uncontrolled medical experimentation” that can cause “irreversible consequences,” one study from last year showed that transgender youth who receive the drugs — which delay the onset of puberty until a person can determine whether they wish to undergo a gender transition — are at reduced risk of suicidal ideation compared to youth that do not receive puberty blockers.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has asked the Texas Department of Family Protective Services' top official to determine whether gender confirmation surgeries performed on transgender children constitute "child abuse" under Texas law.
Abbott, facing a primary challenge from real estate developer and former State Sen. Don Huffines (R-Dallas), vowed last month to prioritize a bill to restrict transgender minors from receiving gender-affirming medical care.
Abbott did not initially include the bill in a list of legislative priorities he was hoping to see passed during a special session of the legislature held last month, prompting criticism from Huffines and other political opponents who believe Abbott has not gone far enough in pushing a conservative agenda as governor.
A Texas mom says she has no regrets about grabbing the phone of an anti-gay "ex-trans" activist who was harassing her transgender son at the Texas Capitol earlier this year and deleting pictures he had taken of the teen.
Lauren Rodriguez, the mother of 17-year-old Greyson, was at the Capitol in April to protest several proposed bills targeting transgender youth, including one bill in particular that would have potentially criminalized parents of transgender minors by labeling them "child abusers" if they allow their children to receive gender-affirming medical treatments.
Rodriguez says Greyson and some of the other transgender kids who had come to Austin to testify against various bills were hanging out in a reserved space, occasionally being accosted by anti-trans activists.
An incarcerated transgender man has filed a lawsuit against the Virginia Department of Corrections for discriminating against him by denying him surgery and other treatment for gender dysphoria.
Jason Yoakam, who has been incarcerated at the Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women in Troy, Virginia, since 2004, was diagnosed with gender dysphoria in 2017, but has repeatedly been denied gender-affirming medical care, including mental health services and gender confirmation surgery. The Department of Corrections also denied Yoakam reasonable accommodations in the form of medical providers who are qualified and well-trained in dealing with patients with gender dysphoria, as well as an insistence that those providers refer to him by his preferred pronouns.
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