A Canadian court is threatening a father with arrest if he calls his transgender teen by the child’s birth name, uses the wrong pronoun, or attempts to dissuade the teen from hormone treatments.
It is the latest chapter in a transgender legal case involving a father who opposes hormone injections for his biological daughter and a mother and medical community who support them.
The 14-year-old biological girl wants to become a boy. The father, known in court documents under the pseudonym “Clark,” believes his child may regret the treatments when reaching adulthood, as sometimes happens. His child is referenced as “Max” or “Maxine” in court documents, depending on the gender.
The order by British Columbia Justice Francesca V. Marzari forbids Clark from “attempting to persuade” Maxine “to abandon treatment for gender dysphoria.” It further orders him not to use Maxine’s “birth name” or refer to Maxine “as a girl or with female pronouns.” The order also prevents Clark from speaking to the media about the case.
Violating the order, Marzari wrote, can result in immediate arrest. Marzari is a member of the British Columbus Supreme Court, an intermediate court. The highest provincial court is the Court of Appeals.
“Disobeying this order is a criminal offence,” the order states.
The father has given interviews to American media outlets.
“While I accept that [the father] does not agree with [the child] as to what is in [the child’s] best interests,” Marzari said, according to the National Post, “he has been irresponsible in the manner of expressing his disagreement and the degree of publicity which he has fostered with respect to this disagreement with his child.”
As Christian Headlines previously reported, the court ruled this year that the teen can have hormonal treatments without parental consent. A doctor at British Columbia Children’s Hospital believes Maxine should receive the injections.
“They’re using [Maxine] like she’s a guinea pig in an experiment,” the father said. “… Is BC Children’s Hospital going to be there in five years when she rejects [her male identity]? No, they’re not. They don’t care. They want numbers.”
The teen told The National Post: “I love my father. I want to have his name as my middle name. … But I cannot be around him unless he respects who I am and my gender identity.”
A peer-reviewed study by a Brown University professor this year found that some teens transition due to peer pressure and social media influence.
“All four of us experienced Rapid-Onset Gender Dysphoria (ROGD) and subsequently identified as trans men for several of our teenage years,” their website says. “We have all since detransitioned/desisted and have been able to explore other individual factors that may have caused or exacerbated our dysphoria.”
Michael Foust is a freelance writer. Visit his blog, MichaelFoust.com.
Photo courtesy: Karina Carvalho/Unsplash
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, The Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.