HB 478 is a Danger to Women and Children

Normal Americans generally have a tolerant live-and-let-live approach to other people’s choices about how they live. This is especially true in our “Live free or die” state of New Hampshire.

That’s what “normal” means. It is also why most of us have watched with a combination of tolerance and puzzlement as a “sexual extremist” movement has gathered power in America. This movement, supported by the media and the Democrat Party, has worked to extend special rights and legal protections to an ever-expanding list of groups known exclusively by their sexual behavior.

More importantly and more alarmingly, the gender-orientation movement always seeks to “weaponize” each new victim group by giving them “lawsuit power.”

This has resulted in the well-funded and well-publicized lawsuits by sexual extremists against bakers, flower-arrangers, pizza restaurants, wedding photographers and even churches.

Since it is not hard to call yourself a victim and scream about it, the list of those given special treatment against “discrimination” has only grown. Originally led by homosexuals and lesbians the sexual-identity movement has triumphed in many jurisdictions with Democrat and media support as the majority looked on.

However, at some point everyday “live and let live” people feel compelled to stand up and protect their families. After all, they are the majority. Why? Because women and children are being endangered by the gender-ideology movement and its demands. It is happening in New Hampshire right now with a proposed “Forced Bathroom Bill.”

House Bill 478, a proposed law being considered right now by the State House in Concord, was recently voted out of committee with an “Ought To Pass” recommendation. The bill is up for a vote on March 8 or 9 and if passed by the full House would eliminate the right to privacy for women and children in New Hampshire’s public bathrooms and other formerly private spaces.

The proposed law gives uncontested access to those spaces to any male who claims he’s “really a woman.” If passed, it will empower male sexual predators, including voyeurs, pedophiles and even potential rapists. The political right names this the bathroom bill, but a more appropriate name might be the “Peeping Tom Protection Act.”

It is not that those with gender identity issues are a threat, it is that those who are a threat will exploit the special classification proposed in this new law. Given the growing number of cases like we saw in the Bedford Target last year, the Legislature would be wise to craft laws to prevent this behavior, not to encourage it.

House Bill 478 opens women’s and girls’ public bathrooms, locker rooms and showers to adult males by command of the law and under threat of a lawsuit for “discrimination.”

This kind of thing used to be offensive to both Democrats and Republicans. In 2009 the New Hampshire Senate voted 24-0 against a similar bill. Was this because “Transgenderism” has long been recognized as a type of mental disorder by medical science?

Former psychiatrist-in-chief of Johns Hopkins Hospital Dr. Paul McHugh wrote in the Wall Street Journal that transgenderism is “a mental disorder . . . that can lead to grim psychological outcomes.” Dr. McHugh observed that “‘sex change’ is biologically impossible” and “claiming that this is a civil-rights matter . . . is in reality to collaborate with and promote a mental disorder.”

The American College of Pediatricians has also stated that propagandizing children with “gender ideology” such as “transgenderism” and “transgenders” in children’s bathrooms is harmful and can rise to the level of “child abuse.”

As Dr. McHugh pointed out, “Policy makers and the media are doing no favors either to the public or the transgendered by treating their confusions as a right in need of defending rather than as a mental disorder that deserves understanding, treatment and prevention.”

With HB 478 Democrats and some Republicans in New Hampshire’s State House could consign both public and private property owners to jackpot justice from frivolous lawsuits while placing women and children at risk. Count me out.

I believe that we should instead craft legislation to support and uphold the First Amendment to the New Hampshire Constitution: “All men are born equally free and independent; therefore, all government of right originates from the people, is founded in consent, and instituted for the general good.” In this case, the bill clearly works against the line, “instituted for the general good.”

Rep. JR Hoell represents Bow and Dunbarton and is a former member of the children and family law committee.

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