A transgender flag being waved at LGBT gay pride march
Humanize From Discovery Institute's Center on Human Exceptionalism

California Is Waging an Ever-More-Aggressive LGBT Culture War

Originally published at National Review

Two bills currently moving through the California Legislature reveal how committed the state’s progressive political leaders are to imposing legal hegemony favoring LGBT social agendas.

The first bill would amend the Family Code to put the thumb on the scale of a “best interests of the child” analysis in custody proceedings to favor a parent who supports gender-affirmation for their gender dysphoric child. From, the amended AB 957 (my emphasis):

Existing law governs the determination of child custody and visitation in contested proceedings and requires the court, for purposes of deciding custody, to determine the best interests of the child based on certain factors, including, among other things, the health, safety, and welfare of the child

This bill, for purposes of this provision, would include a parent’s affirmation of the child’s gender identity as part of the health, safety, and welfare of the child

In making a determination of the best interests of the child in a proceeding described in Section 3021, the court shall, among any other factors it finds relevant and consistent with Section 3020, consider all of the following:

(1) (A) The health, safety, and welfare of the child. (B) As used in this paragraph, the health, safety, and welfare of the child includes a parent’s affirmation of the child’s gender identity.

This means that parents in custody fights will have a material incentive to support affirmation as a means of gaining custody and judges will have to give priority to that issue when weighing and balancing the social factors that always are part of such cases.

In this regard, it is worth remembering that California law already declared CA to be a transgender sanctuary state. If another state court grants custody to a parent refusing gender affirmation and the other parent kidnaps the kid and brings him or her to California, the state’s courts cannot enforce the original decision–as would be true in most such similar circumstances.

A second bill requires health insurance to cover the high costs of fertility services — such as IVF, egg harvesting, and surrogacyand defines the inability to conceive a child as a “status” as well as a health condition, toward mandating coverage for fertile same sex couples alongside medically infertile heterosexuals. From SB 729:

A policy of disability insurance that covers hospital, medical, or surgical expenses that is issued, amended, or renewed on or after January 1, 2024, shall provide coverage for the diagnosis and treatment of infertility and fertility services

(b) For purposes of this section, “infertility” means condition or status characterized by any of the following:
(1) A licensed physician’s findings, based on a patient’s medical, sexual, and reproductive history, age, physical findings, diagnostic testing, or any combination of those factors. This definition shall not prevent testing and diagnosis prior to the 12-month or 6-month period to establish infertility in paragraph (3).
(2) A person’s inability to reproduce either as an individual or with their partner without medical intervention.
(3) The failure to establish a pregnancy or to carry a pregnancy to live birth after regular, unprotected sexual intercourse.

In other words, heterosexual couples will have to demonstrate that they tried and failed to conceive or gestate before insurance coverage is mandated, while same sex couples merely need demonstrate the self-evident truth that they cannot reproduce with their partner. How health care costs will ever be controlled is beyond me. Even the cost savings from legalizing assisted suicide will be hard to make up the difference.

These two bills are merely two fronts in an increasingly aggressive campaign of cultural imperialism that seeks to elevate sexual identity and orientation as of primary social importance. This includes deploying the courts as a coercive means of forcing submission to the values of the equity society that is aborning.

And when anyone resists, they are accused in the media of being haters and by activists as engaging in cruel culture war. It’s an ingenious political pincer that is proving hard to resist, led with great effectiveness by California’s radical cultural aggressors, and soon to be exported into other venues of progressive political dominance.

Wesley J. Smith

Chair and Senior Fellow, Center on Human Exceptionalism
Wesley J. Smith is Chair and Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism. Wesley is a contributor to National Review and is the author of 14 books, in recent years focusing on human dignity, liberty, and equality. Wesley has been recognized as one of America’s premier public intellectuals on bioethics by National Journal and has been honored by the Human Life Foundation as a “Great Defender of Life” for his work against suicide and euthanasia. Wesley’s most recent book is Culture of Death: The Age of “Do Harm” Medicine, a warning about the dangers to patients of the modern bioethics movement.