And now the the James Dobson Family Institute, or JDFI, is praising the move as “courageous and common sense action.”
Dobson is the Christian leader who has advised five presidents, founded the JDFI, authored dozens of books and holds 17 honorary degrees in addition to his Ph.D. from the University of Southern California.
A recent memo from the Health and Human Services Department to other agencies proposed a definition of sex with “a biological basis that is clear, grounded in science, objective and administrable.”
The department said sex should be defined as simply male or female from birth and be considered immutable.
“The sex listed on a person’s birth certificate, as originally issued, shall constitute definitive proof of a person’s sex unless rebutted by reliable genetic evidence,” said the memo.
The New York Times lamented that such a definition would eliminate many of the protections for people who identify as transgender at schools, in prisons and other places.
But the Dobson institute argued the rollback would be “in keeping with the traditional definition of gender the Christian community has always held, and that we as a nation have maintained with uniformity until only recently.”
“In fact, by taking this courageous and common sense action, the Department of Health and Human Services is simply going back to pre-Obama era regulations and policies,” the statement said.
“In this decision, the president has declared that the gender-based discriminations outlawed in Title IX are limited to male versus female. It does not include transgender sexual orientation or gender identity language, which is properly excluded from the definition of sex. We urge Congress to follow the president’s lead by providing a legal definition of sex in federal law so that the Title IX legislation is abundantly and legally certain in all instances.”
Title IX is the federal law passed in 1972 that bans sex discrimination discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.
The Dobson institute said it’s “vital not only for the HHS, which must deal with these regulations frequently, but also for all government, including the courts, which requires a clear understanding of what Congress meant by the word, ‘sex’ when they originally established Title IX.”
“It’s time to put an end to the attempts by LGBT activists to shoehorn into Title IX any identities and language that go against legislative intent and biology. This decision is good for America, and the faith-based community should be encouraged.”
The Times noted Obama sought to “loosen” the idea of gender, prompting disputes over boys in girls’ showers, men in women’s showers, single-sex programs and more.
The Department of Health and Human Services has privately argued in recent months that “sex” never was meant to include gender identity or even homosexuality, because when the law was adopted, members of Congress simply would not have made that connection.
The Trump administration’s reversal of the definition is backed by courts.
U.S. District Court Judge Reed O’Connor in Fort Worth, Texas, has held that “Congress did not understand ‘sex’ to include ‘gender identity.'”
LGBT activists have asserted it is “sex discrimination” to hold an “antitransgender bias” under federal laws such as Title IX.
But HHS officials said the previous administration simply included gender identity and sexual orientation in definitions under a multitude of laws without any rule-making procedures or congressional action.
It was Obama who famously ordered all public schools to let girls go into boys’ showers, or vice versa, if they identified as that sex. But the order was reversed immediately by the Trump administration.
One case arose recently when the board in the Fairfax County, Virginia, school district decided to teach students that sex is a “fluid spectrum.”
The board adopted the extreme “Family Life Education Program, described by Liberty Counsel as “the most radical sex-ed curriculum in the country.”
“The Fairfax County School Board is harming the health, safety and well-being of the students and ignoring parental rights by forcing these ridiculous unscientific ideologically driven notions about gender,” said Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel.
“This disregard for the rights of the parents and for the overwhelming community opposition is absurd. The school board promotes the idea that people are randomly ‘assigned sex at birth,’ when the reality being male or female is hardwired,” he said.
“It is not a mere mistake of some random assignment at birth. The school board members who approved these changes are endangering children not educating them. This is not education, but indoctrination,” said Staver.