The Biden administration is pressuring foreign countries to crack down on forms of psychotherapy that don’t automatically affirm children’s transgender identities and instead encourage children to transition, according to leaked documents obtained by the Manhattan Institute’s publication City Journal.
An internal memo shared by Secretary of State Antony Blinken reportedly instructed embassies to “submit robust information on the so-called ‘conversion therapy’ practices” in their host countries as part of their annual reports on human rights, according to City Journal. Blinken’s definition of conversion therapy reportedly includes “talk therapy” for children with gender dysphoria that aims to help patients feel comfortable with their natural bodies.
Conversion therapy typically refers to clinical attempts to get patients to stop feeling same-sex attractions, which historically has included practices like shock therapy, according to Reuters. However, transgender advocates — along with the Biden administration — are increasingly using the term to describe healthcare professionals helping children come to terms with their birth sex rather than affirming their gender identities and putting them on the medicalization track, which can include puberty blockers, hormones and surgeries. (RELATED: Yes, Doctors Are Performing Sex Change Surgeries On Kids)
As I’ve said before to the LGBTQI+ community: Your President has your back. Yesterday, I signed an Executive Order that will protect the community from hateful attacks, use the full force of the government to prevent “conversion therapy,” advance equality for families, and more. pic.twitter.com/p9vkzu9gmV
— President Biden (@POTUS) June 16, 2022
Blinken’s memo puts the U.S. on track to potentially classify countries that are more skeptical of sex changes for children, such as Sweden, Finland and the U.K., as human rights abusers, and the State Department will then use diplomats’ reports to create an “action plan to combat the practice across foreign policy and foreign assistance lines of effort,” according to City Journal.
The move comes roughly a year after President Joe Biden’s executive order demanding that federal agencies crack down on conversion therapy, which, according to the memo, includes efforts to “suppress or change an individual’s … gender identity, or gender expression.” Blinken’s memo is an attempt to enforce that within the State Department, according to City Journal.
The Biden administration’s interpretation of conversion therapy is similar to that of Jessica Stern, Biden’s Special Envoy to Advance the Human Rights of LGBTQI+ Persons and former executive director of OutRight Action International, a group affiliated with the United Nations that has pushed the concept that non-affirming therapy for gender dysphoria is conversion therapy, according to City Journal.
As the Biden administration promotes child sex changes through various agencies of the federal bureaucracy, some countries in Europe are pumping the breaks on youth medical interventions: Finland calls the practice “experimental,” according to City Journal; the U.K. shut down its pediatric gender clinic to replace it with smaller, regional centers after reports found that the clinic was rushing children onto puberty blockers; and Sweden has banned cross-sex surgeries for minors and encourages doctors to focus on talk therapy and avoid administering cross-sex drugs, according to City Journal.
Puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones are routinely prescribed to minors in the U.S., and many patients experiencing gender dysphoria have undergone double mastectomies as minors to present as male.
The State Department did not respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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