Know Your Enemy is a podcast about the American right co-hosted by Matthew Sitman and Sam Adler-Bell. Read more about it here. You can subscribe to, rate, and review the show on Apple Podcasts and Stitcher, and receive bonus content by supporting the podcast on Patreon.
Matt and Sam talk to Gillian Branstetter, press secretary for the National Women’s Law Center, about the spate of anti-trans laws sweeping the country. What do these interventions do? Who is pushing them? And why?
The American right has long been invested in policing gender boundaries, but its fixation on trans people — and trans children, in particular — has become more acute in recent years. Over a hundred anti-trans state-level measures have been passed this legislative session alone, including athletics bans, curriculum/book bans, religious refusal laws, and bans on access to health care. Perhaps most alarmingly, states like Texas are instituting policies that equate gender-affirming care with child abuse, terrorizing trans kids and their families. With Gillian’s help, we explore the conservative forces behind these bills and reveal the ideological fixations, misapprehensions, and contradictions driving this panic. It’s a difficult but necessary conversation.
Sources and further reading:
J David Goodman, How Medical Care for Trans Youth Became ‘Child Abuse’ In Texas, New York Times
Melissa Gira Grant, The Groups Pushing Anti-Trans Laws Want to Divide the LGBTQ Movement, The New Republic
Jeremy W Peters, A Conservative Push to Make Trans Kids and School Sports the Next Battleground, New York Times
Judith Butler, Why Is the Idea of ‘Gender’ Provoking Backlash the World Over?, the Guardian
Jules Gill-Peterson The Anti-Trans Lobby’s Real Agenda, Jewish Currents
Histories of the Transgender Child,UM Press (2018)
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