Six anti-LGBTQ bills were introduced to the Colorado legislature in the 2020 House sessions so far. The bills largely attack transgender youth and their access to healthcare and housing. LGBTQ advocacy group One Colorado, along with other supporters of the LGBTQ community, spoke against these bills last Thursday, February 13, at the state capital.
Among the voices of reason were One Colorado’s Executive Director Daniel Ramos and Representatives Alex Valdez, Brianna Titone, and Leslie Herod. In addition, Jenna Clincher, the mother of the now-famous Jude of Jude’s Law, as well as Westview Church pastor Nichole Garcia, were in attendance, and they all discussed their motives to kill the harmful bills.
HB20- 1114, titled Protection of Minors from Mutilation and Sterilization, would criminalize medical professionals if they are discovered to be giving gender-affirming care to anyone under the age of 18.
Clincher, who was beside her daughter during the entirety of the passing of Jude’s Law, explained her story as a parent with a transgender child. She described trying to decipher what Jude meant when she said she felt more like a girl than a boy. As a family, they reached out to a psychologist in Boulder and regularly made the commute from Colorado Springs to the LGBTQ-inclusive practitioner.
HB20- 1114 would block the usage of hormone therapy as well as puberty blockers. This law, had it been in effect during Jude’s transition, would have been detrimental to Jude and her family. Clincher described her experiences with doctors specializing in transgender care as giving her a “sense of being able to breathe” because of the incredible and necessary resources that had been provided to her family.
“Many transgender youth that are not supported during their transition turn to suicide, hoping to end the self-hate and pain that they’re feeling. There is no doubt in my mind that if Jude was not allowed to transition with the professional help of Dr. R, she would not be to not be alive today,” Clincher said. “The pain would have been too much to handle. Suicide is very common for our transgender youth that are not given the freedom to live as their true selves, many of whom require hormone blockers, hormone therapy, and sometimes surgery. Hormone blockers, hormone therapy, and surgery save our transgender youths’ lives.”
Perhaps the reasons behind these horrendous bills gaining traction is the lack of believing in and listening to members of the LGBTQ community. Titone made sure to ease the fear instilled from these bills, saying “I want to tell all the LGBTQ community that they don’t have to worry about what’s going on here because they have allies and representation here.”
Even though we killed these anti-LGBTQ bills, we need to remember that LGBTQ people still see these hateful ideas and hear the discriminatory rhetoric. We need to continue spreading love and hope, not hate. #coleg #copolitics #LGBTQyouth #hateday #LGBTQ https://t.co/icHJ24bk9F
— One Colorado (@One_Colorado) February 15, 2020
Titone is the first transgender woman to be elected to the Colorado House of Representatives. Her speech at the state capital last week emphasized the importance of listening to and supporting the LGBTQ community. Titone described her life being better after coming out and urged those who do not personally identify with the LGBTQ community to simply listen.
“Please do this: listen to the lived experiences of the trans and LGBTQIA people, and trust them. If you are not LGBTQ, you are not in a position to doubt someone else or consider that you know how they feel without trusting what we say. Listen to us,” Titone said at the capitol.