California Bill Seeks to Criminalize Parents Who Don’t Affirm Their Child’s Gender Identity

AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli

A bill making its way through the California state legislature could criminalize parents who do not affirm their children’s gender identity.

Assembly Bill 957, also known as the TGI (Transgender, Gender-Diverse, and Intersex) Youth Empowerment Act, claims to encourage parents to support children by “making it clear that affirming a child’s gender identity is part of the health, safety, and welfare of the child.” That ‘encouragement’ can include charging parents who do not affirm with child abuse and removing custody.

On Thursday’s show, Megyn was joined by Carrie Prejean Boller and Britt Mayer, former Miss California USAs and founders of The Battle Cry, to discuss the proposed legislation, its likelihood of passing in the deep blue state, and why it should be of national concern.

What Is California AB 957?

Originally, AB 957 required courts to consider whether a child’s parents were “gender affirming” within the context of custody cases. Earlier this month, California State Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) amended the bill so it would include “a parent’s affirmation of the child’s gender identity as part of the health, safety, and welfare of the child.”

As it stands now, the bill would require judges to favor the parent who affirms the child’s identity in custody cases. Furthermore, if the bill passes, parents could lose custody of their child if they choose not to affirm.

With Wiener’s amendment, state courts would also be able to accept allegations of ‘gender abuse’ from children who report their parents or from “law enforcement agencies, child protective services or other social welfare agencies, courts, medical facilities, or other public agencies or private nonprofit organizations providing services to victims of sexual assault or domestic violence.” By these standards, LGBTQ+ organizations could report parents for child abuse over refusing to affirm a child’s gender identity.

The bill itself is vague. It provides no definition for what qualifies as non-affirming, makes no mention of how a child’s age may apply to the law, and amended the language does not divulge details of how specific scenarios may play out. 

The bill’s original author, Assembly Member Lori Wilson (D-Suisun City) shared in a recent hearing on the proposed legislation that her son identifies as transgender and came out during high school. ” This particular bill adds the very important factor that affirming a child’s gender identity is in their best interest,” she said. “We should be affirming our children in every possible way.”

Can It Pass?

Assembly Bill 957 passed the California Senate Judiciary Committee and will now go before the California State Senate. If it passes, the bill would return to the State Assembly for a final vote before making its way to Gov. Gavin Newsom’s desk. Both Prejean Boller and Mayer call the legislation a “trojan horse” but believe it will pass.  

How California Sets Precedent

If you are not a CA resident, you may be wondering why you should care about the bill. But Prejean Boller and Mayer believe the state often sets precedent. “California sets the tone for the nation,” Mayer cautioned. “This is the government coming in and literally uprooting the nuclear family… and don’t think it stops here. It will absolutely go outside of California.”

Megyn pointed out that the rhetoric is already spreading to the highest levels of the federal government. Just this week, U.S. Assistant Secretary for Health Rachel Levine, who is transgender, claimed that “gender affirming care” is not only “mental health care” but “suicide prevention care.”

This harkens back to the traditional argument trans activists use, Megyn noted, that “if you don’t get your child this affirming care, you’re going to lead them into suicide.” Mayer said the data simply does not support the claim. “Where are the follow up studies on these kids who have been mutilated… showing their long term benefit risk ratio,” she asked. “Show me the data… otherwise, get off the stage.”

This is why, they agreed, the CA bill cannot be overlooked. “Everybody says, ‘oh, crazy California’… but people need to know across the country that this is coming into a city near you,” Prejean Boller concluded. “People need to wake up and realize that this is coming into your homes, into your children, and this gender ideology cult… is systematically, destroying America as we know it”

You can check out Megyn’s full conversation with Prejean Boller and Mayer by tuning in to episode 578 on YouTube, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you like to listen. And don’t forget that you can catch The Megyn Kelly Show live on SiriusXM’s Triumph (channel 111) weekdays from 12pm to 2pm ET.