Obama-Appointed Judge Strikes Down Arkansas Ban On Child Sex Changes

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Laurel Duggan Social Issues and Culture Reporter
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U.S. District Judge Jay Moody, an Obama appointee, struck down an Arkansas law Tuesday banning cross-sex medical procedures for children, including surgeries, puberty blockers and hormones, according to a court filing.

The Arkansas law violated the due process and equal protection rights of children who identify as transgender and their families, as well as the First Amendment rights of medical providers to refer patients to other providers, Moody argued in his ruling, according to the decision. Moody wrote that child sex changes improved the mental health of minor patients and issued a permanent injunction against the ban. (RELATED: American Medical Association Pledges To Work With Activists To Push ‘Youth’ Sex Changes)

“Rather than protecting children or safeguarding medical ethics, the evidence showed that the prohibited medical care improves the mental health and well-being of patients and that, by prohibiting it, the State undermined the interests it claims to be advancing,” Moody wrote. “The testimony of well-credentialed experts, doctors who provide gender-affirming medical care in Arkansas, and families that rely on that care directly refutes any claim by the State that the Act advances an interest in protecting children.”

Arkansas’ “Save Adolescents From Experimentation Act,” the first law of its kind in the U.S., passed in 2021 but was blocked by Moody before going into effect following a lawsuit from the American Civil Liberties Union.

Several states have moved to restrict child sex change procedures in recent years, but have been met with resistance from transgender activist organizations that promote the procedures as medically necessary and beneficial for youth mental health. Several countries in Europe have moved away from the procedures amid growing concerns about their safety and effectiveness.

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