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Roger Severino

Director, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Civil Rights

Issued a ruling that scraps protections for transgender patients against discrimination by doctors, hospitals, and insurance companies. The order was announced during Pride montha and on the four year anniversary of the massacre at the Pulse gay nightclub. Severino said the new rule was “updating our books to reflect the legal reality,” a view that protections against sex discrimination does not apply to transgender people.

Criticized bans on scientifically-discredited “reparative therapy” and labeled being LGBT as being “against your biology”: “Unfortunately you’re seeing some states that are actually trying to criminalize any sex therapy that reinforces a person’s biology. They’re calling into question and passing bans on reparative therapy, is one name for it. And so it’s really an ideology that’s saying you can only go one way, against your biology, but if you try to do anything that enforces it, then we’re going to criminalize it.” (clip begins at 20:18 in audio a link)

Insists that anti-LGBTQ views are “actually decent and honorable beliefs based not on any sort of hatred but, in fact, out of love. It’s a vision of human flourishing, people who believe in marriage and believe in a biblical view of human sexuality, it’s out of love and because you believe this is the proper vision for human flourishing that leads to happiness and leads to childhood success, and there’s a lot of social science evidence backing those statements up.” (clip begins at 7:15 in audio at link)

In a column titled “Pentagon’s Radical New Transgender Policy Defies Common Sense,” he argued that the suggestion of transgender people serving openly in the military “dishonors [the] sacrifices” of “hundreds of thousands of veterans and current troops who were traumatized, wounded, or died fighting against Nazis, Communist aggressors, and terrorists, yet, believe that biological men should not be allowed into the same barracks and showers as women.”

In a joint op-ed with former Senator and anti-LGBT activist Jim Demint, he maligned the complexity of gender identity by insisting transgender rights supporters see sex as “merely a placeholder’ assigned at birth,’ much like a Social Security number, only far easier to change.” In same piece, he slighted trans teen Gavin Grimm as “a gender-dysphoric teen girl.”

Said of LGBT rights: “...same-sex marriage was merely the start, not end, of the left’s LGBT agenda. The radical left is using government power to coerce everyone, including children, into pledging allegiance to a radical new gender ideology over and above their right to privacy, safety, and religious freedom.”

Claims pushback against “religious freedom” bills (i.e., license-to-discriminate bills) is “really just a form of bullying.”

Stated that asking a student to address a transgender classmate with a proper pronoun is “equivalent to making them say two plus two equals five.” Then continued: “This is the logical conclusion to the Sexual Revolution (of the 1960s). Not only can you do what you want to do without anybody being able to say it’s wrong, but you can actually be whatever you want to be based on your subjective self-identification, regardless of biological realities.

Insists that sexual orientation, unlike race, is an issue of “character” (Begins at 10:05 at linked audio)

Co-authored an amicus brief urging the California Supreme Court to reject civil marriage equality based on religious grounds.

The GLAAD Accountability Project catalogs anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and discriminatory actions of politicians, commentators, organization heads, religious leaders, and legal figures, who have used their platforms, influence and power to spread misinformation and harm LGBTQ people.