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National Review
National Review
25 Mar 2023
Wesley J. Smith


NextImg:The Corner: Oregon Legislation Would Allow Children to Decide About Abortion/Transgenderism Without Parental Consent

Political progressives want to divorce children from their parents regarding crucial issues such as sex, abortion, and transgenderism. Pending legislation from the hard-left state of Oregon would do just that.

If the bill passes, any child could obtain an abortion, contraception, be treated for an STD, or sterilized–without parental consent. From Oregon HB 2002 (my emphasis):

SECTION 2. As used in sections 2 to 4 of this 2023 Act:
(1) “Contraception” includes: (a) Steroidal, chemical, physical or barrier, natural or permanent methods for preventing the union of an ovum with the spermatozoon, or for preventing the subsequent implantation of the fertilized ovum in the uterus; (b) All postcoital methods, drugs or devices to prevent pregnancy; and (c) Any other process, device or method to prevent pregnancy . . .

(3) “Reproductive health” means reproductive processes, functions and systems at all stages of life.

(4) “Reproductive health care” includes family planning and contraception, pregnancy termination services, prenatal, postnatal and delivery care, miscarriage management, fertility care, sterilization services, treatments for sexually transmitted infections and reproductive cancers and any other health care and medical services related to reproductive health.

SECTION 3. Every individual has a fundamental right to make decisions about the individual’s reproductive health, including the right to make decisions about the individual’s reproductive health care, to use or refuse contraception, to continue the individual’s pregnancy and give birth or to terminate the individual’s pregnancy.

From what I can tell, “every individual” means just that: There is no age limitation that I could find in the bill, meaning children can consent to any aspect of the broadly defined “reproductive health.”

But surely, parents must be at least notified! Not if they are 15 or older.

(1) Except as provided in ORS 192.567, a physician, physician assistant, nurse practitioner, pharmacist or naturopathic physician providing reproductive health care information and services to a minor as described in ORS 109.640 (1) may not disclose to the minor’s parent or legal guardian information regarding the information and services provided to the minor unless the minor has authorized the disclosure in writing.

If the child is under 15, the parents could be notified, but such communication would not be required.

What about gender transitions? Again, parental involvement not required at age 15:

A minor 15 years of age or older may give consent, without the consent of a parent or guardian of the minor, to: (a) Hospital care, medical or surgical diagnosis or treatment by a physician licensed by the Oregon Medical Board or a naturopathic physician licensed under ORS chapter 685, and dental or surgical diagnosis or treatment by a dentist licensed by the Oregon Board of Dentistry.

This includes transgender interventions:

SECTION 24. (1) As used in this section, “gender-affirming treatment” means a procedure, service, drug, device or product that a physical or behavioral health care provider prescribes to treat an individual for incongruence between the individual’s gender identity and the individual’s sex assignment at birth…

The transgender interventions of minors would have to be paid by the Oregon Health Authority, including facial reconstruction surgeries:

(3) The Oregon Health Authority or a coordinated care organization may not:

(a) Deny or limit gender-affirming treatment that is…:(A) Medically necessary as determined by the physical or behavioral health care provider who prescribes the treatment; and (B) Prescribed in accordance with accepted standards of care.

(b) Deny as a cosmetic service a medically necessary procedure prescribed by a physical or behavioral health care provider as gender-affirming treatment, including but not limited to:

(A) Tracheal shave;

(B) Hair electrolysis;

(C) Facial feminization surgery or other facial gender-affirming treatment;

(D) Revisions to prior forms of gender-affirming treatment; and

(E) Any combination of gender-affirming treatment procedures.

(c) Deny or limit gender-affirming treatment unless a physical or behavioral health care provider with experience prescribing or delivering gender-affirming treatment has first reviewed and approved the denial of or the limitation on the treatment.

The legislation is very long and has many objectionable provisions not mentioned here. But this much is clear:e

As such, HB 2002 is blatant cultural imperialism. No wonder some conservative eastern counties want to secede from Oregon to join Idaho.