Limit the legislation

States which have recently passed anti-trans legislation.


States which have recently passed anti-trans legislation.

As a genderqueer teenager in Maryland, my biggest worry is if the all-gender bathroom at CESJDS will be occupied. But around the country, an onslaught of anti-trans legislation forces trans youth to question if they’ll be able to express their identity at all.

In 2023, 20 states have passed bills that limit the rights of transgender and gender-diverse (TGD) individuals. Nationwide, there are 543 bills at various stages of the legislative process that threaten TGD rights. 70 have already been signed into law. 18 more have passed and have yet to be signed into law or vetoed by their governors.

Anti-trans laws threaten all aspects of TGD individuals’ lives and daily activity. According to, key themes among these bills are “attacks on gender-affirming care, education, athletics, birth certificates [and] religious discrimination.”

Florida is an especially scary state when it comes to anti-trans legislation. On May 17, Governor Ron DeSantis signed five anti-trans bills into law that ban gender-affirming treatment for minors, target drag shows, prevent students from being able to use their preferred pronouns in school and force TGD individuals to use bathrooms that don’t align with their identity.

Even worse is that DeSantis is expected to be a top contender for the Conservative nomination in the 2024 presidential election. If he were to be elected, DeSantis’s transgender witch hunt would be able to shape federal policies.

One of the most heartbreaking of these Florida laws is FL SB254, which allows the state to take custody over any child who has been “subjected to sex-reassignment prescriptions or procedures.” This law modifies a Florida statute on child abuse.

We can debate about whether gender-affirming care should be broadly available, but this is a matter of separating kids from their families. It is not abuse for parents and doctors to listen to a child who says that something feels wrong for them. In fact, the American Medical Association calls gender-affirming care “medically necessary health care services that affirm gender or treat gender dysphoria.”

There is no genuine need for anti-trans legislation. According to AP News, among a total of 27 studies involving 8,000 transgender individuals who had undergone gender-affirming surgery, only 1% expressed regret for the procedure.

Right-wing extremists don’t promote anti-trans policies because they care about their constituents; they do it because it keeps their supporters in a state of fear. Their tactic is to claim that if the so-called woke agenda takes over America, if a man can decide he’s a woman, then America will go in the gutter. Then, they claim that this is why you need to vote for them in the upcoming election. This has nothing to do with safety; it has to do with power.

Florida State Rep. Webster Barnaby (R) even went so far as to refer to transgender people as “mutants from another planet.” In addition, conservative commentator Micheal Knowles called for “transgenderism” to be “eradicated from public life entirely” at the Conservative Political Action Conference. This dehumanizing and violent rhetoric should ring alarm bells for everyone.

There is absolutely no critical thinking involved in anti-trans extremism. These are fear tactics that aim to villainize an entire demographic. It is not dangerous for TGD people to go to the bathroom, dress how they want or to feel safe in their school settings. What is dangerous, however, is the alt-right cohort that wants to strip us of our rights.