COLUMBIA, South Carolina (LifeSiteNews) — The Diocese of Charleston, South Carolina, has voiced public support for a state bill prohibiting the mutilation and chemical castration of minors through so called “gender-transitioning” surgeries and drugs.
On Wednesday, March 29, Senate Bill 627, banning transgender surgeries, hormone infusions, and puberty blockers for minors, was sent by the Senate Subcommittee on Medical Affairs to the full Committee on Medical Affairs for debate. The move forward came in a 4-2 vote after a public hearing, during which Caroline Funk spoke on behalf of the Catholic Diocese of Charleston.
“Men and women are not interchangeable,” Funk said at the hearing. “Use of puberty blockers in children with gender dysphoria is reckless since it radically stops the natural sequence of physical and psychological development.”
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South Carolina’s bill seeks both to protect minors from the irreversible harm involved in “transitioning” and to define terms clearly in law. It defines sex as “the biological indication of male and female in the context of reproductive potential or capacity, such as sex chromosomes, naturally occurring sex hormones, gonads, and non-ambiguous internal and external genitalia present at birth, without regard to an individual’s psychological, chosen, or subjective experience of gender.”
The bill prohibits “the provision of gender transition procedures to a person under 18 years of age,” as well as “the use of public funds for gender transition procedures.” It also forbids “school staff and officials from withholding knowledge of a minor’s perception of their gender from the minor’s parents.”
The bill defines “gender reassignment surgery” as “any medical or surgical service that seeks to surgically alter or remove healthy physical or anatomical characteristics or features that are typical for the individual’s sex, in order to instill or create physiological or anatomical characteristics that resemble a sex different from the individual’s sex, including without limitation, genital or non-genital gender reassignment surgery performed for the purpose of assisting an individual with a gender transition.”
Bill 627 also defines “gender transition procedures” as “any medical or surgical service, including without limitation physician’s services, inpatient and outpatient hospital services, puberty-blocking drugs, cross-sex hormones, or genital or non-genital gender reassignment surgery, provided or performed for the purpose of assisting an individual with a physical gender transition.”
The public position of the Charleston diocese comes after the U.S. Bishops’ Conference issued a letter forcefully condemning such surgeries as immoral mutilations of healthy body parts. The U.S. bishops also rooted transgender ideology in a dualistic approach to the human person, in which the body and soul are taken as two complete natures, allowing for the soul to be in the “wrong” kind of body. The bishops reiterated that the Church has always condemned such dualism, teaching instead that body and soul together make up one nature and are both constitutive of the human person.
READ: US Catholic bishops condemn genetic engineering, transgender surgeries and drugs
The bishops wrote, “The soul does not come into existence on its own and somehow happen to be in this body, as if it could just as well be in a different body. A soul can never be in another body, much less be in the wrong body. This soul only comes into existence together with this body. What it means to be a human person necessarily includes bodiliness.”
Condemning all medical interventions aimed at “transitioning” a person to the opposite sex as an attempt to alter the order and finality of the human body as determined by God, the bishops stated, “Rather than to repair some defect in the body or to sacrifice a part for the sake of the whole, these interventions are intended to transform the body so as to make it take on as much as possible the form of the opposite sex, contrary to the natural form of the body. They are attempts to alter the fundamental order and finality of the body and to replace it with something else.”
“Such interventions, thus, do not respect the fundamental order of the human person as an intrinsic unity of body and soul, with a body that is sexually differentiated,” the bishops declared. “Bodiliness is a fundamental aspect of human existence, and so is the sexual differentiation of the body.”
South Carolina’s bill comes as Washington D.C.’s “Trans Day of Vengeance” was canceled in the wake the tragic grade school shooting that took place in Nashville, Tennessee, in which the shooter identified as “trans” and targeted the Christian school children.
LifeSiteNews reached out to the Diocese of Charleston for comment and will update the report should anything be forthcoming.
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