The House Committee on Public Health discussed legislation that would ban child gender mutilation in Texas on Monday.

A Texas GOP priority for the 88th Legislative Session, the Republican Party of Texas is calling for a complete ban on gender modification for children: “Texas must ban chemical castration, puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, genital mutilation, bodily alteration surgery, psychological/social transitioning, and any other methods applied to or performed on children.”

House Bill 1686 by State Rep. Tom Oliverson (R–Cypress) would start by prohibiting physicians from performing child gender mutilation surgeries and banning the use of Medicaid or state health plans to fund any such surgeries.

“Multiple systemic reviews say there is no high-quality scientific evidence that hormone therapies, puberty blockers, or surgery help children overcome gender dysphoria or lower the risk of suicide,” said Oliverson, addressing the liberal arguments for allowing the gender-confused to undergo such radical procedures.

“What happens to an adolescent who is treated with hormone therapy or puberty blockers, and certainly surgery, is irreversible,” said Oliverson.

As part of the public testimony, State Rep. Tony Tinderholt (R–Arlington) asked doctors testifying before the committee, “What is a woman?”

Dr. Quinton Van Meter, a pediatric endocrinologist and immediate past president of the American College of Pediatricians testifying in support of the measure, said a woman “produces ova.”

Dr. Jessica Zwiener, an endocrinologist from Houston, who specializes in initiating and managing therapy for “transgender” adolescents and adults and was testifying against the bill, told Tinderholt, “It sounds like an easy question, but it’s more complicated than that.”

“There’s multiple different ways to determine what sex you are,” said Zweiner, listing hormones, internal organs, chromosomes, genitalia, and gender identity.

Tinderholt highlighted that he’s looking for the answer in regards to sex, not gender identity.

Zwiener continued to conflate the two, listing several rare medical abnormalities as reasons for her definition.

Tinderholt said his 6-year-old and 4-year-old can identify a woman, and he was exceedingly concerned that a doctor with 12 years of training couldn’t define it.

He then asked whether a man can have a baby.

Zweiner said a transgender man can.

“This is part of the problem,” said Tinderholt. “The people that are doing these things to the children and telling the parents that this is acceptable, and this is the way it happens, and you can’t even define a woman to me—you tell me that it’s complex what a woman is.”

Texas Scorecard recently produced an investigative series on child gender mutilation.

HB 1686’s companion bill Senate Bill 14 by State Sen. Donna Campbell (R–New Braunfels) has been passed through its Senate committee and could be voted on in the coming days in the Senate.

Sydnie Henry

A born and bred Texan, Sydnie serves as the Managing Editor for Texas Scorecard. She graduated from Patrick Henry College with a B.A. in Government and is utilizing her research and writing skills to spread truth to Texans.