'Under his eye': Outrage swells over Missouri AG’s transgender 'complaint or concern' online form
The recently-appointed Attorney General of Missouri is under fire after a social media post revealed his targeting of the state’s transgender residents includes a form anyone across the country can fill out to report a “complaint or concern” about medical treatment given to transgender people in his state.
Attorney General Andrew Bailey, a Republican, who uses language like “woke, left-wing ideology,” “clandestine, shadowy network,” “pernicious threat,” and “gender mutilation” to describe gender-affirming care and the medical professionals who provide it, has already turned Missouri into the first state in the nation that effectively all but bans that medically-necessary and widely-approved care for both minors and adults.
“Attorney General Andrew Bailey announced plans to restrict health care for transgender people weeks ago,” the Associated Press reported last week, “when protesters rallied at the Capitol to urge lawmakers to pass a law banning puberty blockers, hormones and surgeries for children. But the discussion was focused on minors, not adults.”
The Attorney General’s spokeswoman, Madeline Sieren, “clarified in a statement later in the day that adults also would be covered” by his order.
The New York Times this week cites Bailey’s “temporary order severely restricting gender-affirming care,” and observes: “this means gender-affirming medical care has been restricted by law or other means in 13 states, with another two under judicial review.”
Bailey has been very vocal – and very partisan – about his targeting of one of the smallest and most vulnerable populations in his state.
“There’s a woke left-wing ideology that’s masquerading as medicine,” Bailey told Fox News in March (video below), when he announced his emergency order putting in place heavy restrictions on gender-affirming care that all but ban treatment. “There’s a clandestine, shadowy network of these transgender clinics across the state of Missouri that we were unaware of until we launched our investigation into a particular clinic here in St. Louis that a whistleblower came forward and made some very credible allegations that amounts to child abuse.”
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“As our investigation’s gone on we’ve discovered what is a pernicious threat to children’s safety across the state of Missouri,” he claimed, falsely, while promising to use “the legal recourse we have available to us now to stand in the gap, to protect kids and give our general assembly time to enact a more thorough bill that will put an end to this kind of gender mutilation.”
“We’re not going to let left-wing ideologues experiment on children here in the state of Missouri.”
That last line was the quote he used to promote his interview with Fox News, an interview that was primarily about his efforts to remove St. Louis’ top prosecutor.
\u201cWe\u2019re not going to let left-wing ideologues experiment on children here in the state of Missouri.\u201d— Attorney General Andrew Bailey (@Attorney General Andrew Bailey) 1679708019
That whistleblower’s alleged “very credible allegations” were quickly “called into question,” New York magazine’s Intelligencer reports.
“At least 20 people, including parents of patients and patients themselves, have given accounts that directly challenge the key claims made by [Jamie] Reed in the Free Press.”
Two days before his Fox News interview, Bailey declared his intentions as he promoted an article from the far-right Breitbart website.
“Protecting kids is always worth the effort, and we need to get creative and use every legal recourse we have available to us to stand up and protect kids from this kind of predatory left-wing ideology masquerading as medicine,” he tweeted.
In his exclusive Breitbart interview, Bailey said: “We’re on offense on all fronts,” against gender-affirming treatment. “We marshaled state resources, we’re looking at licensure penalties, we’re looking at Medicaid fraud penalties. We’re looking at consumer protection issues.”
“We’re not finished yet … this is a multifaceted, multi-pronged approach. … It’s worth doing because kids are worth protecting,” Bailey added.
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Also in March, Missouri’s St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported: “World’s leading transgender health experts attack regulations planned by Missouri AG.”
“Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey’s proposed rules [on transgender medical care] are ‘based upon manipulated statistics, flawed reports, and incomplete data, and prevents the provision of medically-necessary care,’ read a statement from the World Professional Association for Transgender Health,” the Post-Dispatch reported. “The association is made up of nearly 3,000 providers and researchers who care for and study transgender and gender-diverse people across the globe in order to provide the best care.”
AG Bailey has continued to promote his attacks on transgender Missourians – and promote himself – as recently as Wednesday morning, in an announced interview with far-right and publicly censured former Trump attorney Jenna Ellis, on her American Family Radio show. AFR is the “broadcast ministry” of the American Family Association, which appears on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s list of anti-LGBTQ hate groups.
AG Bailey, in fact, is very comfortable promoting his attacks on transgender Missourians, and himself. After being appointed as Attorney General in January, Bailey must run for and win election next year to keep his job.
On Monday, Bailey posted a well-produced video highlighting tweets praising his actions, some including against transgender people.
“I’m passionate about defending the Constitution, upholding the rule of law, and protecting the liberties of the people of the state of Missouri.I’m proud of the successes we’ve had in my first one hundred days, and I’m excited to see all this office will achieve moving forward,” he wrote.
Among those tweets he chose to include are messages from the Family Research Council, which also appears on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s list of anti-LGBTQ hate groups, and FRC’s president, Tony Perkins. Also, the far-right extremist group Moms for Liberty.
\u201cI\u2019m passionate about defending the Constitution, upholding the rule of law, and protecting the liberties of the people of the state of Missouri.\n\nI\u2019m proud of the successes we\u2019ve had in my first one hundred days, and I\u2019m excited to see all this office will achieve moving forward.\u201d— Attorney General Andrew Bailey (@Attorney General Andrew Bailey) 1681768405
On Tuesday, a social media post by an author and theology and culture scholar drew a great deal of attention.
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“Missouri now has a page where people can report trans individuals and the people who help them to the state,” David W. Congdon wrote, adding, “I hate this place.”
\u201cMissouri now has a page where people can report trans individuals and the people who help them to the state. I hate this place.\u201d— David W. Congdon (@David W. Congdon) 1681835409
He included a screenshot from AG Bailey’s “Transgender Center Concerns Form.”
“Complete this form to submit a complaint or concern about gender transition intervention you have experienced or observed in Missouri,” Bailey’s form reads. “Please complete this form in as much detail as possible.”
There has been great outrage over the form, which requires no proof, no identity check, not even a “Captcha,” as some on social media noted.
“This is sick…wtf” noted journalist Yashar Ali.
“Across the U.S., states increasingly are acting like fascist theocracies. If you think they’ll stop at trans people, you think wrong,” tweeted Ashton Pittman, news editor for the Mississippi Free Press.
“I’m not sure how many steps into the ‘first they came for…’ poem we’re into, but fuck this absolute nonsense,” wrote journalist Matt Novak.
Jeff Sharlet, author of “The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power,” and “C Street: The Fundamentalist Threat to American Democracy,” which led to his Netflix series, “The Family,” simply tweeted, “Under his eye,” a reference to “The Handmaid’s Tale.”
“If Republicans want to dodge the ‘Nazi’ allegations, maybe they shouldn’t have a form urging people to report queers to the state,” wrote actor Abe Goldfarb.
“This is awful,” wrote journalist Richelle Carey.
Author and researcher Jason Colavito: “As godawful as this is, it’s pretty much exactly what Republicans did in the 1950s when they established homosexual snitch lines for spying neighbors to call in tips about suspected gay people so they could be prosecuted.”
Here are a few more responses via Twitter:
“The Nazis also created methods to monitor and control social behavior…”
“This is Nazi shit. If you think they’ll just stop there, you’re insane. It’s time to flee.”
“everyone go spam the shit out of this form…”
“the supreme court making it legal to offer bounties for snitching leads to this, where everyone is a potential informant and nobody trusts anyone near them, only the state. it’s fascism incarnate, and it’s why the “culture war” is an essential part of the conservative project.”
Watch the video and read the tweet above or at this link.