In a stunning decision with international implications, the United Kingdom’s High Court ruled December 12 in Bell vs. Tavistock that puberty blockers (PB) and cross-sex hormone (CSH) use in gender dysphoric minors was experimental and should not, in most cases, be given to children under 16 without court order, adding that such petitioning was also advisable for 16 to 17-year-olds. They clarified that the consent issue was not about the breadth and depth of information the minors were given, but that “There is no age appropriate way to explain to many of these children what losing their fertility or full sexual function may mean to them in later years.”
The full conclusion section of the High Court decision, paragraphs 133 to 153, is well worth reading, but I will focus on a few points therein. The High Court conclusion repeatedly emphasized (paragraphs 134, 143, 148, 151 and 152) the experimental nature of PB and CSH use due to the limited evidence for efficacy and safety. Though stipulating that a court order should usually be sought for PB use in gender dysphoric children under age 16, they advised that even for minors under age 16 to 17, “clinicians may well regard these as cases where the authorisation of the court should be sought prior to commencing the clinical treatment.”
The decision acknowledges that children have developing brains and simply cannot grasp the long-term results of transition (paragraph 141): “That adolescents find it difficult to contemplate or comprehend what their life will be like as adults and that they do not always consider the longer-term consequences of their actions is perhaps a statement of the obvious.” In the current ideological climate, stating the obvious is increasingly a necessity.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Andrè Van Mol