From Fox News via a reader of this blog:
The list of things 15-year-olds are not legally allowed to do in Oregon is long: Drive, smoke, donate blood, get a tattoo—even go to a tanning bed.
But, under a first-in-the-nation policy quietly enacted in January that many parents are only now finding out about, 15-year-olds are now allowed to get a sex-change operation. Many residents are stunned to learn they can do it without parental notification—and the state will even pay for it through its Medicaid program, the Oregon Health Plan.
In a statement, Oregon Health Authority spokeswoman Susan Wickstrom explained it this way: “Age of medical consent varies by state. Oregon law—which applies to both Medicaid and non-Medicaid Oregonians—states that the age of medical consent is 15.”
While 15 is the medical age of consent in the state, the decision to cover sex-change operations specifically was made by the Health Evidence Review Commission (HERC).
Members are appointed by the governor and paid by the state of Oregon. With no public debate, HERC changed its policy to include cross-sex hormone therapy, puberty-suppressing drugs and gender-reassignment surgery as covered treatments for people with gender dysphoria, formally known as gender identity disorder.
Let me get this right. A 15 year old is not mature enough to put a permanent mark (tattoo) on his or her body but he or she is mature enough to decide to remove or remodel his or her sex organs -- permanently -- and have the taxpayer of Oregon pay for the surgery?!?!? And this at a time when people are beginning to wonder of sex reassignment surgery is ever the right treatment for those who believe their gender identity and their body's gender are in conflict... Oregon believes that this will not be a dramatic burden to the taxpayer ($150K annually or so) for the surgery but what about the lifetime of therapy to deal with either the surgery itself or the continuing psychological problems of which their gender dysphoria is generally but one.
The point of this is that we seem to be ready to allow our children and youth to be anything and everything but children and youth. We dress young children up as adults and allow them to watch adult themed movies and TV and free access to an internet filled with pornographic and violent images. We are getting to the point where pedophilia is beginning to be see a different order rather than a disorder and so we expect that they might be able to interact consensually with adults. We allow them to have free access to contraceptives, birth control, and abortion services. We want them to pick an adult career and college major in preschool. But they dare not act like children or be given an opportunity to live without the adult cares and distractions of life. So we think that early on they will have to pick a gender and decide what is right for them without being encumbered by anatomy. What part of parenting have we missed? The state wants to by-pass the mom and dad and the world wants to dress up kids like adults and we as parents seem destined to follow the wisdom of government and culture.