The following is a letter sent to the South Dakota House State Affairs Committee regarding HB 1217 and 1247 in the 2021 Legislative Session. The bill is scheduled to be heard in committee on Monday, February 22nd.
Dear House State Affairs Representatives,
On Monday, you are scheduled to have hearings for two bills that target transgender and LGBTQIA2S+ individuals. As a constituent residing in District 12, I am urging you to vote NO on both of these bills for the following reasons.
HB 1217 is based on myths and misinformation. The idea that trans women would have an unfair advantage in women’s sports is harmful to all women. It perpetuates the notion that those who identify as women are somehow inferior and weak. Furthermore, as stated by the ACLU: It invites gender policing that could subject any woman to invasive tests or accusations of being “too masculine” or “too good” at their sport to be a “real” woman.” (source)
HB 1247 is an attempt to allow medical professionals to deny care to an individual based on “religious, moral, ethical, or philosophical beliefs or principles.” This article rebuts that idea simply: “Deeply held religious beliefs may conflict with some aspects of medical practice. But doctors cannot make moral judgments on behalf of patients.” A more nuanced look at the entire issue can be found in this article, published in January 2020. Here’s an excerpt: “…Medical professionals voluntarily join a profession that is expected to serve society by providing essential services, all of which are legal and professionally accepted, and refusing to do so is incompatible with their professional responsibilities (Neal and Fovargue 2019; Schuklenk and Smalling 2017; Wicclair 2011).”
Just in case the links in text did not work for you, here they are in order:
Thank you for your time.
Here are the emails of the 2021 HSAC if you would like to send your own email: