Tuesday, October 11, 2022

'Experts' used to defend Arkansas anti-trans law have serious credibility problems

During the now legendary interview with Jon Stewart, Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge couldn't name any of the 'experts' she was relying on to defend the state's law banning gender-affirming healthcare.  There may have been a reason for her convenient amnesia. Several of her 'experts' have serious credibility problems. 

Alejandra Caballero, a clinical instructor at Harvard Law School's Cyberlaw Clinic, investigated just who these experts were and what she found shouldn't surprise those of us who keep up with the anti-LGBTQ industry.  She posted what she found in a Twitter thread and she brought the 'receipts.'

Allow me to summarize:

Caballero looked at the four experts Rutledge relied on and she found:

One of them is plastic surgeon who runs botox clinic in a strip mall in Alabama. He has never worked with trans patients. 

Another one is affiliated with the anti-LGBTQ hate group Alliance Defending Freedom and opposes gender-affirming care on religious grounds. 

Caballero said the following about the third 'expert':

 Dr. Levine almost entirely subsists on being an anti-trans "expert." He's in his 80's, rarely sees patients, and does not publish any peer-reviewed research. Levine gets paid more than $20k by earning $400+/hr per case he's involved in as an expert. It's about the money for him. 

And the last is someone I am very familiar with: 

 Dr. Mark Regnerus wrote the infamous "New Family Structures" paper in 2012 on same-sex couples and the effects on children with a terrible methodology. The paper was ideologically driven by animus and it attracted significant controversy for being flawed. Regnerus was thoroughly discredited by this study and he has no expertise in the care of gender dysphoria in trans youth. He went to significant lengths to undermine LGBTQ families with a severely flawed paper that was driven by his animus.

Caballero goes on to say:

These are the experts that Leslie Rutledge relies on in pushing back against Jon Stewart. It's no wonder she couldn't answer the question. The experts she relies on are bigots and quacks with no expertise on treating gender dysphoria. This is why they consistently lose in court. They have no experts. Gender affirming care is the standard set by every major medical organization in the US. They have to rely on these hacks because they are driven by hate and animus, not a genuine concern for trans youth.

Caballero's revelation underscores the fact that the anti-LGBTQ industry have recycled their attacks on gays to demonize trans people. Using fake experts  in court is an old tactics.  Over a decade ago, to vilify gays and lesbians, they relied on the usage of 'ex-gays,' spokespeople like Peter Sprigg of the Family Research Council, and discredited researchers like Regenerus or Paul "gay stuff gerbils up their rectums" Cameron.

It only goes to prove that their deceptive tactics never change. Only the targets do.

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Activist Urvashi Vaid’s immeasurable impact on the LGBTQ rights movement - She was a wonderful leader. I had the fortune to meet her once.