The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) asked the Supreme Court to block Tennessee’s law banning sex change procedures for minors.
The ACLU wrote in its petition that the Supreme Court’s review is “urgently needed,” citing 21 states that have passed laws banning child sex change procedures in the past three years. The group, which sued Tennessee in April on behalf of the families of transgender identifying youth, wants the Supreme Court to review a September appeals court ruling that allowed the state’s law to take effect.
“Neither the wave of state bans on gender affirming medication nor the lawsuits challenging them are likely to abate in the near future,” the petition states. “Given the division among the courts of appeals on the appropriate level of scrutiny in these and related cases, any delay in this Court’s review only risks subjecting transgender adolescents, their parents, and their doctors to a patchwork of inconsistent laws and legal standards that obstruct their medical care.”
Laws banning child sex changes have been upheld in some states, such as Alabama and Kentucky, but struck down in other states like Arkansas. (RELATED: Red State Asks Supreme Court To Reinstate Law Banning Drag Shows In Front Of Children)
Tennessee’s law, signed by Republican Gov. Bill Lee in March, bans healthcare providers from offering procedures like surgeries, puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones to children. The ACLU argues that it violates the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause.
BREAKING: We’re asking the Supreme Court to hear our case and block Tennessee’s ban on medical care for transgender youth.
— ACLU (@ACLU) November 1, 2023
The Sixth Circuit highlighted problems with categorizing transgender individuals as a constitutionally protected class in its September ruling.
“Unlike existing suspect classes, transgender identity is not ‘definitively ascertainable at the moment of birth,'” the opinion states. “It is not necessarily immutable, as the stories of ‘detransitioners’ indicate and as plaintiffs do not dispute.”
Thomas Jipping, a senior legal fellow at the Heritage Foundation, told the Daily Caller News Foundation in October the Supreme Court would be “properly cautious about creating an individual right under the 14th Amendment that isn’t there” if it took a case on child sex change bans.
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