Then They Came for Me

UPDATE: Public Comments Opened for Anti-trans Rules
Make your voice heard and advise them of your opposition.

Do what thou whilt shall be the whole of the law.

Once again, trans lives are under attack by the GOP.

DeWine just created new “administrative rules” stripping away trans rights right after vetoing a bill that does the same on a smaller scale. Disturbing and terrifying to see this villainy has come to my home state.

The GOP has already been working to strip trans people of the ability to stand up for themselves.

They have already made it effectively impossible for a trans person to be on the ballot in Ohio unless they out themselves to the general public, which is an act of painting a target on their head. In Montana they’ve already blocked a trans lawmaker from speaking in the face of a bill trying to ban minors from getting medical care for gender dysphoria in the state. A move taken despite studies showing that access to trans medical care is shown to dramatically reduce the mortality rate for gender dysphoria.

Now they’re following it up in Ohio with a new set of “administrative rules” to restrict access to trans medical care for everyone, both children and adults. They want to restrict access to life saving medicine out of a false claim of it being for “protection.” The GOP loves to falsely claim trans healthcare is still “experimental” and “based on very limited, poor-quality research” and falsely claim that a lot of people later regret having gotten care, but that couldn’t be further from to the truth.

Trans medical care is life saving and necessary.

This is the case for both children and adults who are afflicted with gender dysphoria. Gender dysphoria is a physical sensation not unlike pain which can become so intense that suicide can become the only hope of escape. People who are trans are born with it and their brains show as being the gender they identify as in MRI brain scans. Don’t let the conservative propaganda or your own biased assumptions deceive you, access to care is a life and death matter. Transition is the only form of treatment shown to be successful in reducing levels of gender dysphoria found in patients. Everything else has been tried and met with extremely limited to no success. Trans medical treatment is nothing new. It has been around for a very long time and has been extremely successful, and went largely unnoticed until recently where the GOP has started using it as a rallying cry having lost the battle against gay marriage rights. Recently conservative mouthpieces have taken to calling trans people “groomers” and “devils” in public forums despite a utter lack of convicted cases of sexual misconduct by trans people. Meanwhile 1 in 10 young protestant Christians have left their church over sexual abuse. Clearly they need to get their priorities straight.

The suicide rate for trans people is exceptionally high.

The reasons for this are numerous but the biggest factors are discrimination, rejection, and lack of access to treatment for gender dysphoria. There’s a reason that the biggest trans yearly tradition isn’t a parade or a celebration of any kind. It’s “Trans Day of Remembrance.” Every year on November 20th we remember and morn our dead. There is also “Trans Day of Visibility” but that’s something a lot of trans people hate and want nothing to do with as they don’t want to be outed or shown a light on out of the danger of retaliation, discrimination, targeting, death threats, and disrespect.

DeWine added that the rules will require transgender adults to obtain from their providers a “comprehensive care plan” including “lengthy” mental health counseling before they can be considered for any medical interventions.

by Brooke Migdon of The Hill

Gatekeeping is a term used to describe barriers and extra steps added into the process of getting treatment for gender dysphoria. Thanks to DeWine, Ohio is adding more gatekeeping; erecting and expanding restrictions and barriers for access to care greater than anywhere else for both minors and adults alike. It’s seriously fucked up and they will have blood on their hands. None of these added gatekeeping measures are necessary. There is no evidence that any of them are even helpful. Make no mistake, they will absolutely be disastrously harmful and deadly. The claim of fly-by-night providers and clinics is nothing short of a fantasy. These rules will only serve to increase the mortality rate for untreated gender dysphoria.

Left untreated, gender dysphoria worsens. Every delay towards getting care is extremely harmful and increases the likelihood it will prove fatal in much the same way that exposure to the gympie-gympie plant is often fatal. As a result, these new rules are going to lead to more otherwise preventable deaths. I personally had to jump through several hoops to get HRT and I almost didn’t survive. They had eliminated that form of gatekeeping I had to deal with since then, but now these fuckers not only put it back, but made it worse. They’re saying it’s for “protection” but if that’s really the goal they did that exact opposite of what they should have done. This isn’t for protection at all, it’s an discriminatory and prejudiced attack on trans people as a whole out of malice and spite. This is a direct attack on trans people like myself as part of the conservative plan to “eradicate” us.

One of the rules, he said, will require transgender adults seeking access to medications like hormones to retain a multidisciplinary team “including but not limited to an endocrinologist, a bioethicist and a psychiatrist.”

by Brooke Migdon of The Hill

Notice they slipped a “bioethicist” in there. Bioethicist is just GOP dog whistling for having a conservative tell you that you can’t get treatment because they personally think it’s unethical.

DeWine’s proposal is among the nation’s most stringent for transgender adults seeking access to gender-affirming medical care, and it is likely to bottleneck resources and worsen financial strain on people seeking gender-affirming care.

by Brooke Migdon of The Hill

They’re turning Ohio into the anti-trans hellscape they turned Florida into.

The conservatives are already doing this in Florida (our most fucked-up state) to disastrous effect, Worse, they may make me have to do all this extra shit just to remain on my current treatment that I’ve been on for a decade. If that happens, there’s a serious chance it will prove fatal. I can’t be sent back to square one. I do not have the ability to go through that hell again, and I know I’m not the only trans person facing the same thing.

The bill was a red herring.

Yes, it’s true DeWine vetoed the bill restricting access to care for minors. However this new move has been done by circumventing democracy and is much worse and much further reaching. (And for that matter, the GOP is going to force the bill through anyway. That’s bad in and of itself, but that’s not what I’m concerned about at the moment.) I’m talking about the “administrative rules” [executive order] he put in place without democratic involvement. The bill was almost certainly a red herring and an attempt to misdirect and bury the news of the new “administrative rules”; an attempt to hide their horrific actions from the general public. Don’t be fooled. The GOP is anti-American and pro-fascist.

If you have an ounce of morality in your body, fight this.

It’s extremely important our cis allies prove they actually are allies. Get obnoxious. Spread this around to everyone you know and make sure they read the entire thing, even if they’re a conservative. No, especially if they’re a conservative. Attack the GOP; get involved with the Democratic party and push for petitions, lawsuits, whatever you can to defend trans rights. Flood members of the Ohio government with calls, petitions, protests, general strikes, and letters. Make a sizable donation to TransOhio and get involved. Make it your life’s mission to save us from this affront on human rights until trans rights are enshrined in the constitution just like abortion rights were in the recent election. Kick toxic people out of your life, yes even your family, and show no restraint. Ban them from everything if you have to. Make it clear that transphobia of any form will not be tolerated. Even if you don’t live in Ohio there’s things you can be doing to help your local trans community, and you should. Also, if you can, please donate to TransOhio. It’s one of the few organizations in the state fighting for us actively. They also support ya in other ways like providing resources, organizing events, and providing name change assistance. Support them as much as you can and volunteer if you’re able.

Please don’t ignore this.

Please don’t think that just because you don’t hate trans people that that in itself is good enough. It is not. You must fight for us because we’re too vulnerable and too small a minority to fight for ourselves. If you are unwilling to take these steps, then your allyship was merely performative and devoid of substance. You were never a real ally to begin with. Do better.

We’re entirely at the mercy of cis people to prevent this attempt at genocide.

Please help. I am absolutely terrified of the evil Dewine has wrought. I am incapable of fighting this anymore than I already have. I shouldn’t have to face an uphill battle to just be allowed to continue to receive medical treatment for a medical issue, and to just exist as who I really am and stay that way. I’m in fear for my life.

It’s up to you to fight this.

Reject ignorance, hatred, and division and embrace love and compassion.

There is no bond that can unite the divided but love: all else is a curse. Liber CCXX I:41

Love is the law, love under will.

Exhausted and terrified,
Vanessa