- Florida Governor Ron DeSantis was discussion addiction recovery at a press conference in Tallahassee when he went on the unrelated tangent
- His call to sue doctors who provide gender-affirming care earned cheers and wild applause from the Floridians who gathered to watch him
- DeSantis previously made headlines for his culture war with LGBTQ community
- His Parental Rights In Education Law, dubbed ‘Don’t Say Gay’ by critics, was denounced by President Joe Biden as ‘hateful’ earlier this year
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis called for doctors who perform gender-affirming care on minors to be sued during a press conference in Tallahassee on Wednesday.
It’s the latest shot in the popular Republican figure’s months-long culture war with the LGBTQ community, which has sent his national profile skyrocketing with moments like his public spat with the Walt Disney Company over Florida’s new ‘Don’t Say Gay’ law.
DeSantis comments came while discussing his state’s substance abuse recovery model – and were met with fierce applause in response.
‘One of the things that they are trying to do, is they talk about these very young kids getting gender-affirming care,’ the governor said.
‘But they don’t tell you what that is, is they’re actually giving very young girls miss double mastectomies. They want to castrate these young boys. That’s wrong.’
When asked by DailyMail.com who ‘they’ refers to, DeSantis’ spokeswoman Christina Pushaw said it was ‘the powerful institutions and people who push the false narrative that so-called “gender affirming care” (experimental medical and surgical interventions) is the best way to deal with gender dysphoria or confusion in children and youth.’
‘Moreover, “they” – the politicians, doctors, and activists who promote “gender affirming care” – falsely claim that puberty blockers are safe and should be given to children who are confused about their gender.’
DeSantis continued during his press conference, ‘We’ve stood up and said, both from the health and children wellbeing perspective, you know, you don’t disfigure 1012 13 year old kids, based on gender dysphoria.’
He went on to highlight a 2011 study frequently referenced by opponents of gender-affirming care for children and teens, which suggests that a majority of transgender youth grow out of it by the time they are adults.
‘Eighty percent of it resolves, anyways, by the time they get older,’ DeSantis said.
Critics of the study have claimed it’s based on incomplete information and therefore the figure is overblown.
DeSantis finished, ‘I think these doctors need to get sued for what’s happening.’
Whoops, cheers and claps erupted from the crowd after his call.
LGBTQ rights activists have insisted that giving minors access to gender affirming care is safe, and that denying it could have harmful repercussions on the mental health of trans youth.
DeSantis’ administration has been accused by Democrats and human rights activists of curbing the freedoms of transgender youth.
In April, Florida’s Health Department updated its guidance to discourage the use of puberty blockers, hormone treatments, and surgical procedures for gender-affirming care for kids under 18.
And in March, DeSantis signed his controversial ‘Parental Rights In Education’ bill, dubbed ‘Don’t Say Gay’ by critics.
They’re also concerned it restricts trans youth from confiding in school counselors and nurses – in some cases, the only adults they can open up to.
Supporters point out that the word ‘gay’ does not appear in the legislative text nor does the law single out any specific orientation or identity.
It bans ‘classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity’ in kindergarten through third grade, and such discussions on all other academic levels must be ‘age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards’.’
In addition to banning academic discussion on gender identity and sexual orientation, the law also requires public school districts to put procedures in place to require school officials to report a shift in a student’s ‘services or monitoring related to the student’s mental, emotional, or physical health or well-being’ to their parents.
It also allows parents to sue schools and school districts for running afoul of the new law.
President Joe Biden denounced the law as ‘hateful.’
Disney’s opposition to the law and subsequent public fallout with DeSantis spurred a highly-publicized dispute that saw Orlando’s Disney World lose its self-governing status in Florida.