Leslie Rutledge extends hands across the sea for support of transgender discrimination; overlooks some details

Leslie Rutledge got whipped today at both the U.S. Supreme Court and Arkansas Supreme Court so let’s make it a trifecta, with Tom Mars’ note of her pleading in the federal case seeking to prevent a federal judge from stopping the state from violating the rights of children and families by prohibiting them from receiving gender-affirming medical care.

As another lawyer remarked to me:

It was only recently, it seems, that right wingers couldn’t stop railing against the specter of U.S. courts using or citing foreign law. . .but now the Ark AG has filed a motion to dismiss the ACLU’s trans health care case relying in large part on a 2020 UK decision! (And there’s more to that UK case in any event. . .) Who knew that not only Blackstone could still be prodigiously invoked, but that the Ark AG, being the internationalist that she is, thinks we should be guided by contemporary UK decisions as well

This is from the first sentence of the second paragraph of Rutledge’s brief in support of the statute.

This issue has arisen in judicial proceedings around the world. In December 2020, the U.K. High Court of Justice of England and Wales determined that children likely cannot ever understand the irreversible consequences of using puberty-blocking drugs as a gender-transition procedure. Thus, the High Court said, children usually cannot give informed consent to the experimental use of these drugs for gender transition.

Key fact: Parents are included in the decision-making process in Arkansas, as this article spelled out in great detail. They are plaintiffs in the Arkansas case, too.

The British study is a good bit more complicated than Leslie Rutledge lets on. And Rutledge uses it to talk approvingly of court decisions related to surgical decisions for minors, which are NOT done in Arkansas.

Also, if a court ruling from England is to be given weight, Rutledge might want to consider this development  a bit more than two months ago:

Britain’s High Court ruled on Friday that parents will be allowed to give consent for their children to take puberty-delaying drugs during gender identity treatment without having to gain a judge’s approval.

Late last year, the same court ruled that under-16s were unlikely to be able to give informed consent to such medication, and doctors must now get a so-called “best interests order” from a judge to prescribe the drugs to adolescent patients.

Still more from the legal group that brought this case.

So if Arkansas should follow England’s example, the existing practice of medical providers helping transgender children with informed parental consent after extensive counseling should be legal, not prohibited by the landlords, grifters, dairy farmers and assorted demagogues of the Arkansas legislature.


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