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Supreme Court to Hear Landmark Case on Banning Transgender Treatments for Children

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to take up one of the country’s most contentious issues, announcing on Monday that it will hear a challenge to a Tennessee law that bans sex-reassignment treatments for children. The Supreme Court will hear the case in the fall and likely issue a decision by June 2025. It will be one of the most significant decisions in the Supreme Court’s history and will undoubtedly be one of the most closely watched cases of the next term.

The law in question is SB1 1 1bans on hormones, puberty blockers and sex-reassignment surgery for children, which were upheld last year by the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Nearly half of states have laws banning what supporters of the surgery call “sex reassignment surgery.”

Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Scurmetti, a Republican, expressed optimism the legislation would be upheld.

“We fought hard to defend Tennessee’s law protecting children from irreversible gender-based treatment and won a thoughtful, well-reasoned opinion from the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals,” Scurmetti said. “We look forward to finishing the fight at the U.S. Supreme Court. This case will bring much-needed clarity about whether the Constitution includes special protections for gender identity.”

The case could clarify the Supreme Court’s direction on LGBT cases. The 6-3 conservative majority has handed down decisions on abortion and religious freedom that have been welcomed by conservative Christians, but not always on gender. In 2019, for example, the Supreme Court sided with the LGBT community. Bostock v. Clayton CountyThe case extended protections against employment discrimination to sexual orientation and gender identity under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Conservatives Neil Gorsuch and John Roberts joined the majority in the case, and conservative Amy Coney Barrett subsequently took the seat, replacing liberal Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

In a ruling from the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals last year, Chief Judge Jeffrey S. Sutton argued that states must be allowed to address the issue without court intervention.

“As a result, federal courts must be vigilant against substituting their own views for those of Congress,” Sutton wrote. “…given the high stakes early on in these policy deliberations — the long-term health of children affected by gender dysphoria — a healthy government will usually benefit from more debate rather than less, more input rather than fewer, and more consideration rather than less of an unbiased policy approach. Giving voice to Congress on one side of the debate while silencing Congress on the other side of the debate will not accomplish these goals.”

Photo credit: ©Getty Images/Countess Jemal/Stringer


Michael Faust He has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years, and his work has appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, Christian Post, Leaf Chronicle, Toronto Star and Knoxville News Sentinel.

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