Idaho gov stands up to fed judge mandating taxpayers fund self-mutilation of gender-dysphoric criminals

· August 27, 2019  
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United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
Justin Sullivan | Getty Images

Imagine if a federal judge demanded that a state fund elective amputation for criminals in jail who wanted to cut off an arm or a leg. Everyone would question the power of that judge to do so and would question his mental ability to serve on the bench. Well, it should be no different when a judge mandates that the state pay for mutilation procedures to alter the body of an inmate suffering from gender dysphoria who wants to amputate his male plumbing. Thankfully, one governor has finally had enough.

When we thought courts couldn’t get more insane

There have been those who half-jokingly advocated in the past for castrating sex offenders, but I don’t think this is what the Ninth Circuit judges had in mind when they issued an order requiring Idaho’s Department of Corrections to fund “gender confirmation surgery” for Adree Edmo. Edmo is serving a 10-year sentence for sexually abusing a 15-year-old boy.

The per curium (unanimous, without a named author) ruling of the three-judge panel found that the initial ruling in favor of Edmo by a district judge in December was “logical and well-supported” and that “responsible prison officials were deliberately indifferent to Edmo’s gender dysphoria, in violation of the Eighth Amendment.” The Eighth Amendment is the ban on cruel and unusual punishment.

Yes, it is “cruel and unusual,” in the minds of these troubled jurists, not provide to an inmate a procedure never provided in another prison in our history.

All three judges – Circuit Judge Margaret McKeown, Circuit Judge Ronald M. Gould, and District Judge Robert S. Lasnik – were appointed by President Bill Clinton.



Edmo has attempted to self-castrate his male plumbing several times, and that was used by the courts as evidence that the state needs to follow through and complete his insane acts of self-destruction.

Obviously, if a prison denies a prisoner of lifesaving medical care, it could be a violation of the Eighth Amendment. But in Estelle v. Gamble (1976), the Supreme Court set the standard of such a violation through bad medical care as “only medical care so unconscionable as to fall below society’s minimum standards of decency.” Fast-forward 43 years later, and the fringe judges on the Ninth Circuit believe that a state declining to mutilate someone in the most grotesque manner falls below society’s minimum standards of decency. We clearly live in a different society – or planet – from the legal profession. Lawyers must have been born on Venus.

Even those who warned about judicial supremacism last generation could never haven imagined a time when lower courts would codify taxpayer-funded mutilation and castration operations into the Eighth Amendment! The legal system sanitizes this “procedure” with the term “gender confirmation surgery,” but what it is really saying – to put it in terms everyone can understand – is castration of the male genitalia and some sort of construction of female body parts. Such activity should be illegal as a violation of the Hippocratic oath for anybody, yet we have judges mandating that it be done for a prisoner on the taxpayer’s dime.

While this is the first case of federal courts mandating such funding for prisoners, it’s part of a growing trend of mental illness in the court system that is dangerous, immoral, and illogical. The previous Friday, William M. Conley, a federal judge in Wisconsin, mandated that the Badger State use its Medicaid funding to pay for similar “gender confirmation” mutilations, which can include castration, mastectomies, hysterectomies, genital reconstruction, and breast augmentation.

This insane Ninth Circuit ruling runs counter to rulings from the First Circuit in 2014 and the Fifth Circuit this past March, both of which swatted down similar demands from mentally disturbed inmates seeking government-sponsored self-destruction of their sexuality.

Courts cannot legislate or appropriate funds even for saner functions

It need not be said that a judge could never have such power to redefine sexuality, redefine the difference between mutilation and constructive surgery, and absolutely pervert the Constitution. But even without such immoral and illogical judicial fantasies, no judge has the power to mandate appropriation of any funding. A judge can mandate that a state not punish an individual by vacating a conviction, but he can’t force a state to give benefits to anyone and has no power to enforce such a ruling. That is a violation of the separation of powers. As such, any state that decides to follow such an edict is as immoral and insane as the judge.

Thankfully, Idaho Gov. Brad Little is refusing to pay for this mutilation pending an appeal to the Supreme Court. “The hardworking taxpayers of Idaho should not be forced to pay for a convicted sex offender’s gender reassignment surgery when it is contrary to the medical opinions of the treating physician and multiple mental health professionals,” said Gov. Little in a statement. “I intend to appeal this decision to the U.S Supreme Court. We cannot divert critical public dollars away from the higher priorities of keeping the public safe and rehabilitating offenders.”

Republicans in the state legislature are also pushing back. “I absolutely stand with our governor who has vowed that the State of Idaho will not provide this transgender surgery,” said Rep. Barbara Ehardt of Idaho Falls. “As Republican legislators, we also initially let Governor Little know that we were absolutely opposed to this taking place by sending him a signed petition against this procedure. This man sexually abused a 15-year old boy. That alone says that there is something wrong with him mentally. But we don’t reward this kind of criminal behavior with an elective surgery just because a prisoner claims they want one.”

Ehardt, who also coached Division I women’s basketball at four universities for 15 years, told me she is very concerned about how the gender-bending agenda in general is endangering women both in terms of fair competition in sports and public safety. “Not only should Idaho taxpayers not have to foot this medical procedure, but we also should not place at risk our women who are still serving time in our Female Correctional Facility by transferring him there. That is simply not right!”

A governor shouldn’t even have to beg the Supreme Court to uphold basic humanity. How is it that we’ve accorded lower court judges the power that even God doesn’t wield? Isn’t it interesting how states seem to thumb their noses at federal sovereignty law on immigration policy every day, yet it is so hard to find local governments willing to stand up to the unelected branch of the federal government when it oversteps its boundaries? Idaho officials are now presented with an outstanding opportunity to make a stand against both judicial tyranny and the Left’s de-civilization gender-bending agenda.

Imagine for a moment if a state legislature in a competitive (and certainly a red) state considered using taxpayer funding through prisons or Medicaid to fund such mutilations. It would spawn a robust public debate, as any social transformation would in a republic. Why then should we tolerate a faceless and unaccountable judges being ceded such power to do this?

There was once a time when we fought a revolution over taxation without representation. What is it we must do to fight taxpayer-funded castration without representation?


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Author: Daniel Horowitz

Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.