Sunday, February 25, 2007
A judge has ordered taxpayers to foot the bill - up to $20,000 - for a sex-change operation that will make a 21-year-old man into a woman. Original story published February 25th, 2007 in the New York Post.
In a ruling to be released Thursday, Manhattan Family Court Judge Sheldon Rand said the city must provide the subsidized snip because the woman wannabe, identified as Mariah Lopez (pictured at left courtesy of AmnestyUSA), had been in the care of the Administration for Children's Services (ACS) as a youngster. Apparently the point is, that, even though Lopez is an "enfranchised" adult, the condition was identified while he/she/it was still under the care of ACS, so ACS must pay even if Lopez could afford to pay for the surgery himself/herself/itself.
The judge said the agency has a duty to pay for all "necessary" medical care to the kids in its charge. The judge ruled that Lopez suffers from a diagnosed gender-identity disorder and that surgery is the recognized treatment. In his decision, Judge Rand wrote, "Mariah L. should be treated in order that she may go on with her life and be in a body which blends with the gender with which she identifies."
It is the second time the judge has ruled that ACS should pay for Mariah L.'s surgery. His original decision of January 2006 was put on hold so the city could appeal.
However, the city's senior lawyer on the case, Julian Kalkstein, intends to appeal again. "We respectfully disagree with the judge's decision and are going to be appealing the case". ACS lawyers also claim that Lopez had not complied with previous psychotherapy and does not have stable housing or employment.
Lopez himself/herself/itself was ecstatic. "I don't think it's hit me yet. The consequences are so far reaching," a jubilant Lopez told The Post after learning of her victory in the legal battle, which started before Lopez was 18 and cared for by ACS. "This court has recognized that gender-identity disorder is a real condition and there is a real solution to it and people don't have to suffer from it", Lopez continued.
Lopez said the surgery would cost between $15,000 and $20,000. The city has already paid for a laser hair-removal procedure around Lopez's genital area.
Lopez's father, who lost custody when she was 6 because of his drug use, said, "She's my son-daughter, I love her. "If it's in her blood to be a woman, so be it. I think if it helps other gay people, I'm all for it."
Lopez, who was named Brian at birth, told of feeling like a girl trapped in a boy's body at 6 years old. "I didn't know I was a boy. It was a rude awakening. I thought you could choose your gender," Lopez said. Lopez - who is still physically a man - dresses as a woman and has taken hormones since age 15 in order to go through puberty as a girl, get breasts and develop a higher-pitched voice. Lopez also likes to be referred to as "she."
Lopez also claimed the city had already decided to appeal. "They are compromising my health and safety," she said. Lopez has a track record of activism focusing on HIV/AIDS education and awareness and transgender advocacy. On the Amnestyusa.org website, Mariah discusses her experiences as a transgender woman of color – of being subjected to verbal abuse, sexual harassment and physical assault by police in New York's West Village. She has been in the New York City foster care system since age nine; three years ago, at age 17, she won a landmark case that allowed transgender teens in foster care to wear the clothing of their gender choice.
Sheldon M. Rand has served on the Family Court bench since 1977. Prior to ascending to the bench, he served three years as law secretary to Supreme Court Justice Irwin Brownstein, and litigated in private and small firm practice. Admitted to the bar in 1962, Judge Rand graduated from New York University and Brooklyn Law school.
In an article about New York City's intent to allow people to change the sex on their birth certificates even if they've not had surgery, published on November 7th, 2006, the New York Times also cited the Mariah Lopez case.
Commentary: The most troubling aspect of this court decision is the willingness of the judge to hold ACS financially responsible without considering the potential ability of Mariah Lopez to bear the financial costs. Even though ACS was responsible for her at the time Lopez decided "she" was no longer a "he", "she" is an enfranchised adult now, and ACS's responsibility for "her" welfare ceased upon "her" eighteenth birthday.
The fact that surgery is considered the "preferred treatment" does not really reflect medical wisdom, but political correctness. Reparative therapy, still evolving, is an option, but the gay rights lobby screams bloody murder whenever anyone even suggests it. Gay activists don't even pretend to attempt to rebut the notion with civil, intelligent dialogue - they immediately go ballistic and throw out the epithets like "homophobe", "breeder", "fascist", et al. This unfortunately scares the politicians and the lemmings away from the public square and silences them, which is exactly what the gay rights lobby wants. The experience of James Hartline in San Diego, testifying at a school board against the San Diego Cooperative Charter School in the face of group vilification, is a textbook example of mob tactics employed by the professional gays and their sockpuppets. And these tactics are not used exclusively by gays - antifa activists employed the same tactics when they forcibly "escorted" Jared Taylor off the lectern at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia before he could even deliver his speech.
Reparative therapy has potential. Back on April 22nd, 2006, I presented and discussed the research of Dr. Larry Cahill and Dr. Lisa Kirkpatrick (link to Dr. Kirkpatrick from the Majority Rights Blog), who scanned the brains of 36 healthy men and 36 healthy women to determine the findings. Cahill already knew that the sees use different sides of their brains to process and store long-term memories, base upon his earlier work. The study focused on activity in the amygdala, a cluster of neurons found on both sides of the brain and involved for both sexes in hormone and other involuntary functions, as well as emotions and perceptions. He also has shown that a drug called Propranolol can block memory differently in men and women. The scans also showed that men’s and women’s amygdalas are polar opposites in terms of connections with other parts of the brain. In men, the right amygdala is more active and shows more connections with other brain regions. In women, the same is true of the left amygdala. Scientists still have to find out if one’s sex also affects the wiring of other regions of the brain. It could be that while men and women have basically the same hardware, it’s the software instructions and how they are put to use that makes the sexes seem different.
This research implies that men who feel like women may simply have their brain wired bass-ackwards. But we'll never know if research along these lines is politically repressed. Reparative therapy for homosexuals could lead to reparative therapy for pedophiles and Alzheimer's patients, saving society untold millions in health care costs. The politicization of science must stop.
Tags: homosexuality , New York , transgenders , reparative therapy , judicial terrorism