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Tipsheet

State AGs Push Back Against Woke Medical Groups Urging DOJ to Go After Transgender ‘Disinformation’

Michael Reynolds/Pool via AP

On Wednesday, thirteen state attorneys general warned Attorney General Merrick Garland against prosecuting people and organizations critical of transgender health care for minors. 

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Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti led a letter with 12 other GOP state attorneys general demanding Garland “stand down” on the request of the American Medical Association (AMA), American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and Children’s Hospital Association’s (CHA) that the Justice Department go after those questioning the medical establishment pushing irreversible transgender healthcare for kids.

“Americans frequently disagree about important issues. That is normal and healthy. But the answer to disagreement is never the criminalization of speech,” the letter reads. 

An accompanying press release from Skrmetti’s office outlines that “anyone engaged in violent crime or threats of violence should be prosecuted by the appropriate authorities but is equally adamant that the federal government cannot investigate or prosecute critics for their speech.  Even if criticism of pediatric transgender treatments might provoke strong reactions, it is still entirely protected by the First Amendment.”

As Townhall covered, AMA, AAP and CHA detailed how hospitals providing transgender care, which includes hormone therapy, puberty blockers and sex reassignment surgery, have been subject to “attacks” from those who oppose these services. 

“From Boston to Akron to Nashville to Seattle, children's hospitals, academic health systems, and physicians are being targeted and threatened for providing evidence-based health care,” the letter said. “These attacks have not only made it difficult and dangerous for institutions and practices to provide this care, they have also disrupted many other services to families seeking care.”

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"The attacks are rooted in an intentional campaign of disinformation, where a few high-profile users on social media share false and misleading information targeting individual physicians and hospitals, resulting in a rapid escalation of threats, harassment, and disruption of care across multiple jurisdictions. Our organizations have called on technology companies to do more to prevent this practice on digital platforms, and we now urge your office to take swift action to investigate and prosecute all organizations, individuals, and entities responsible," it continued.

The health organizations’ letter specifically referenced a bomb threat that was made against Boston Children’s Hospital this year, which Townhall covered. Shortly after, the FBI apprehended a suspect for the hoax threat, which occurred after it was revealed that the hospital was providing transgender surgeries on minors.

The letter from the attorneys general pointed out that other countries, including Finland, have “moved to restrict the medical treatment of pediatric gender dysphoria.”

In a statement, Skrmetti told Townhall that “now is a time for more speech, not less. Each side must have the opportunity to marshal evidence, make its case, and attempt to persuade the American people of the rightness of its position… Silencing critics of current gender dysphoria treatment practices for minors will not make children any safer or healthier.”

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“With Europe pulling back out of concern that these procedures hurt kids, at the very least, Americans deserve an open and honest debate,” he added.

Dr. Stanley Goldfarb, chair of the organization Do No Harm, praised the letter. 

“Medical associations should follow the science, not try to stifle public debate – especially when they’re pushing a divisive ideology that could literally ruin children’s lives,” Goldfarb told Townhall. “The AMA demands that we follow their lead without question, yet these are the same forces who falsely equate psychological counseling for children to "conversion therapy" in order to railroad minors into a predetermined path of drugs and surgery. The better path is to listen to these state attorneys general and let this conversation continue nationwide.”

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