Fri. Jul 19th, 2024

Alabama lawmakers advance bill that would define male and female based on sperm and ova

By 37ci3 Feb21,2024

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Alabama lawmakers are advancing legislation that would strictly define who is considered male and female based on their reproductive system. Opponents said the move could violate the rights of transgender and intersex people in the state.

“There are only two sexes, and each individual is either male or female,” he says The Senate bill was approved in committee on Tuesday.

It defines gender based on reproductive anatomy, and says schools and local governments can create single-sex spaces like bathrooms based on those definitions. A House committee plans to take up a similar bill on Wednesday.

The bills are part of a wave of legislation in Republican states seeking to regulate which bathrooms transgender people can use, which school sports teams they can play on, and ban gender-affirming medical aids like puberty blockers and hormone therapy. minors.

“I’m here today to stand up for women’s rights,” said Sen. April Weaver, a Republican who sponsored the bill. These definitions will guide courts in interpreting existing laws, he said, and “codify old definitions of man, woman, woman, man, boy, girl, mother, father and gender.”

The bill states that, barring an accident or anomaly, a woman is a person who “has a reproductive system that produces eggs at some point,” and a man, barring an accident or anomaly, “has a reproductive system that produces sperm at some point. ” The bill requires any state-sponsored agency that collects sex-related information to “determine whether each individual is male or female at birth.”

During the public hearing, opponents said the law is part of an ongoing attack on transgender people’s right to simply go about their daily lives.

“I’m literally just here to say I’m a woman. I am also transgender. There have always been people like me … and it’s good that we exist,” Allison Montgomery told the County and Municipal Government Committee.

What supporters are looking for, Montgomery said, would be for men “who have been on testosterone for years and have full beards” to be required to use women’s restrooms once they produce eggs in their bodies.

It’s unclear how the proposal would work people who are considered intersex, or born with a combination of male and female biological characteristics. The committee added that gender can be designated as unknown in public records when the gender “cannot be determined medically for developmental or other reasons.”

The legislation contradicts decades of medical research showing that gender is a spectrum. not a binary structureand sexual anatomy does not always agree with the chromosomes and genes that cause most people to develop and identify as male or female.

The measure would create an unspecified exception for people with intersex status — individuals with congenital or medically verifiable differences in sexual development who must be “accommodated” under federal law, declaring such people “not a third gender.”

Research shows that US population of intersex peoplegreater than transgender people, born with physical characteristics that do not fit typical definitions of male and female.

Becky Gerritson, executive director of the Eagle Forum of Alabama, a supporter of the bill, said the definitions would lead the courts.

“This bill will help protect single-sex spaces that provide privacy, safety and equal opportunity,” Gerritson said.

Democratic senators Linda Coleman-Madison of Birmingham and Merika Coleman of Pleasant Grove questioned the need for the bill.

“It’s just heartbreaking. We spend all this time putting down people who are not like us. It’s sad,” Coleman-Madison said.

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By 37ci3

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