Federal Court Continues to Debate Fate of Arkansas’ SAFE Act

On Monday, attorneys suing to overturn an Arkansas law protecting children from sex-change procedures filed a letter with the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals.

The letter cites the Fourth Circuit’s decision in Kadel v. Folwell. The letter argues that laws protecting children from sex-change procedures trigger heightened scrutiny under the Equal Protection Clause. It is part of the ongoing lawsuit over Arkansas’ SAFE Act.

In 2021, lawmakers in Arkansas overwhelmingly passed the Save Adolescents From Experimentation (SAFE) Act.

The SAFE Act is a good law that prevents doctors in Arkansas from performing sex-change surgeries on children or giving them puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones.

Unfortunately, the SAFE Act has been tied up in court for more than two years. However, federal appeals courts have let similar laws go into effect in Tennessee, Kentucky, and Alabama.

Sex-change surgeries and procedures can leave children sterilized and scarred for life.

Researchers do not know all the long-term effects these procedures can have on children, but a growing body of scientific evidence shows children should not be subjected to sex-change procedures, puberty blockers, and cross-sex hormones.

Not long after Arkansas passed the SAFE Act, a major hospital in Sweden announced that it would no longer give puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones to kids.

Since then, the U.K. has joined a growing list of jurisdictions that protect children from puberty blockers, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has added a warning label to puberty blockers after discovering they caused some biological girls to experience swelling in the brain.

Over the past three years, reports from Europe and elsewhere have shown time and again that Arkansas was right to pass the SAFE Act. Today about half the states in the U.S. have passed laws protecting children from sex-change surgeries.

We believe our courts ultimately will recognize that the SAFE Act is a good law and uphold it as constitutional.

Articles appearing on this website are written with the aid of Family Council’s researchers and writers.

Gov. Sanders Signs Executive Order Protecting Women’s Sports in Arkansas

On Thursday Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders signed an executive order designed to protect female athletes in Arkansas.

The executive order opposes the Biden administration’s effort to redefine “sex” in federal Title IX to include sexual orientation and gender identity.

The governor’s executive order says, “Title IX was passed to protect women, not harm them . . . The Biden administration is attempting to unilaterally rewrite federal law to advance its radical gender ideology against women and girls.”

The executive order notes that redefining “sex” in Title IX unfairly lets men compete in women’s sports; it lets them use girls’ showers, locker rooms, and bathrooms at school; and it will let men and compete for women’s scholarships.

The order concludes,

1. It is declared to be the policy of this state that sex is an immutable characteristic of the human body, rooted in biology and the created order. The government should celebrate, not erase, sex differences by providing proper protections for them. 

2. The educational institutions of Arkansas will continue to enforce state law guaranteeing the right of students to maintain their privacy. Students must not be forced to shower or undress with members of the opposite sex. 

3. Female students must not be denied equal athletic opportunities or forced to risk their safety by having biological males placed into female-designated sports leagues. 

4. Students and employees of Arkansas’ educational institutions may not be forced to use false pronouns. The right to refuse to speak a lie is guaranteed in the First Amendment. My administration will continue to protect this fundamental right. 

5. All accused individuals must be given robust, traditional due process rights if they are accused of harassment under the Biden Title IX Amendment. 

6. The Arkansas Department of Education is ordered to provide specific guidance on how to enforce the rights of Arkansans to equal opportunity, free speech, due process, and privacy under the U.S. Constitution, Title IX, and state law, despite the Biden administration’s unlawful administrative rule. At no point should Arkansas law be ignored. 

Family Council supports Governor Sanders’ executive order. As we have said time and again, women’s athletics is at risk of being erased in America.

In particular, female cyclists, swimmerspowerlifterssprinters, and others have seen their sports radically changed by male athletes who compete as women.

Letting men compete in women’s sports reverses 50 years of advancements for women.

It hampers girls’ abilities to compete for athletic scholarships, and it hurts their professional opportunities as adults.

In some sports, it can even be dangerous.

Many states — including Arkansas — have enacted laws that preserve fairness in women’s sports.

In 2021 Arkansas passed Act 461 by Sen. Missy Irvin (R — Mountain View) and Rep. Sonia Barker (R — Smackover) preventing male student athletes from competing against girls in women’s athletics at school. This good law protects fairness in women’s sports in Arkansas.

We appreciate Gov. Sanders’ willingness to stand up for women and girls by opposing the Biden Administration’s radical effort to redefine “sex” in Title IX.

You Can Read The Governor’s Executive Order Here.

Articles appearing on this website are written with the aid of Family Council’s researchers and writers.

British MP Acknowledges Truth of the Cass Review: Guest Column

The Cass Review, “the most extensive and thorough … evidence-based review of treatment for children experiencing gender distress ever undertaken,” landed like a bombshell in the U.K. The report’s main conclusion is that science is not settled about “gender-affirming” treatments of minors. In fact, Dr. Cass concluded that “for most young people, a medical pathway will not be the best way to manage their gender-related distress.” 

As expected, the reaction from LGBTQ advocates was swift and shrill, attempting to discredit The Cass Review. For example, British MP Dawn Butler claimed that Dr. Cass left out 100 studies from the report. It turns out she simply repeated a social media post of a pro-LGBTQ organization without fact-checking the claim or reading the report. 

After being corrected by Dr. Cass and others, Butler admitted her mistake and apologized for “inadvertently [misleading]” the House. Good for her. She’s given us an example of the power of truth to change hearts and minds. 

Copyright 2024 by the Colson Center for Christian Worldview. Reprinted from BreakPoint.org with permission.