All posts by Wintery Knight

https://winteryknight.com/

California passes new law to undermine parental rights in all 50 states

California is interesting state because the Democrats have majority control of the House and Senate. The governor is also a Democrat. So there are no brakes on what they can do. I like to read stories about them to find out what Democrats would do if they had no opposition.

Here is a story from The Federalist:

California Democrat Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a new law Thursday night to strip rights away from parents who protest their children’s blind pursuit of destructive surgeries sold to confused minors as “gender affirmation.”

Under Senate Bill 107 introduced by San Francisco-area State Sen. Scott Wiener, California will now become a “refuge” for trans-identifying minors who seek irreversible medical treatment for gender dysphoria. The legislation was supposedly aimed at blocking red states from enforcing laws barring extreme treatments for underage victims, and instead invited those minors to seek surgeries in California.

The bill eliminates parental authority over children everywhere in the country, by allowing California doctors to prescribe transgender drugs to children in other states.

Jay Richards, a policy expert at the Heritage Foundation, and Emilie Kao, a vice president and senior counsel at Alliance Defending Freedom, broke down the components of the law in Newsweek.

“California courts will have the power to strip custody from parents, wherever they live, who doubt the wisdom of these experimental and irreversible procedures — if their child so much as steps foot in California,” the pair explained. “It would also allow California doctors to treat minors still in other states. With the advent of telehealth, a child could get a prescription for hormones from a California doctor while at home in Arkansas or in Florida.”

[…]Under California’s new law, parents might not even know whether their children are pursuing these dangerous drugs and procedures. Senate Bill 107 mandates that doctors hide children’s medical information from parents if related to “gender identity,” even if requested by subpoena.

And what’s the effect of all this permissiveness?

Here is a study that explains what happens next.

Summary:

Lowering legal barriers to make it easier for minors to undergo cross-sex medical interventions without parental consent does not reduce suicide rates—in fact, it likely leads to higher rates of suicide among young people in states that adopt these changes. States should instead adopt parental bills of rights that affirm the fact that parents have primary responsibility for their children’s education and health, and that require school officials and health professionals to receive permission from parents before administering health services, including medication and “gender-affirming” counseling, to children under 18. States should also tighten the criteria for receiving cross-sex treatments, including raising the minimum eligibility age.

And this is the interesting part:

In the past several years, the suicide rate among those ages 12 to 23 has become significantly higher in states that have a provision that allows minors to receive routine health care without parental consent than in states without such a provision. Before 2010, these two groups of states did not differ in their youth suicide rates. Starting in 2010, when puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones became widely available, elevated suicide rates in states where minors can more easily access those medical interventions became observable.

Rather than being protective against suicide, this pattern indicates that easier access by minors to cross-sex medical interventions without parental consent is associated with higher risk of suicide. The Heritage model plotted the difference in a three-year rolling average of suicide rates between states with minor access provisions and states with no such provision. Chart 2 plots the trend in this difference for those ages 12 to 23 who could have been affected by the policy when cross-sex medical interventions became available. For comparison, Chart 2 also shows the trend in this difference for a group ages 28 to 39, who could not have been affected by these policies, since the people in this group would have been at least 18 when puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones became available.

Without making any adjustments, suicide rates among those ages 12 to 23 (blue line) begin to spike in states that have provisions that allow minors to access health care without parental consent relative to states that have no such provision around 2016, after cross-sex medical interventions became more common. By 2020, there are about 3.5 more suicides per 100,000 people ages 12 to 23 in states with easier access than in states without an access provision. There is no similar spike in suicide rates among those ages 28 to 39 (grey line) at that time.

I think if I asked Gavin Newsom what he hopes to achieve with his assault on parental rights, he’d say that he wants to reduce suicide rates among children. Sadly, the scientific evidence shows that his policy achieves the exact opposite effect. This is what always happens when Democrats are in charge. They legislate in order to feel good and look good. But the result is never good.

Knight and Rose Show update: 24 episodes finished, here are the numbers!

Rose and I are swamped this week, so we decided to take a week off and work on new shows. So, I thought I would make a post showing the numbers from our Knight and Rose podcast so far, and remind everyone how to listen. A few of my friends told me that they are still behind on the episodes, so take this week to catch up.

Let’s start with the numbers. We started the podcast on April 15th, so we’ve been at it for just under 6 months. The most important platforms are the platforms that suggest us to other users. So, we have to care about YouTube for that reason. We have 157 subscribers, and 5,926 views so far on all 24 episodes. That’s about 247 views per episode. We don’t get a lot of comments on the videos, but if people do click like on the videos and leave comments, YouTube will show the videos to more people. Even comments like “Yikes” and “Wow” count in the YouTube ranking algorithm.

More people listen to the audio of the podcast, which is just an MP3 file that people download using Apple, Spotify, PodBean, etc. You can see all the episodes and the number of downloads across all channels here. You can actually download the episodes to your computer from that big list, but you have to click on each one, then click on Download. We have a total of 9305 downloads, which is about 388 on average. 21% of people listen on Apple, 14% by web browser, 9% by Podbean, and 8% by Spotify. I use AntennaPod on my Android phone, because it’s simple and open source.

We care about reviews on Apple, because Apple promotes podcasts with lots of 5-star reviews.  We have 19 ratings in the US market, and 3 more in the Canadian market. All of them are 5-star ratings. And we have a few reviews. We also have ratings on Spotify, 13 of them, and all 5-stars. Spotify ratings are helpful too. I also upload the episodes to Google Podcasts and a bunch of other places. And the video version goes to our Rumble and Odysee channels, in case Susan yeets us off of YouTube. We have been quite scared that would happen to us because of the discussion of Islam, homosexuality, feminism, etc. But so far, so good.

I added a section to the blog where you can see all the past episodes, with links to the blog posts. The buttons at the top of that page link to all the places where the podcasts are distributed. I’ve been embedding the YouTube video in the blog posts, because when I tried to do Spotify, Spotify would only let you hear 30 seconds. I’ve also updated the Multimedia page with a couple of audio interviews we did with Apologetics 315 and Her Faith Inspires. We’re supposed to do another video one with Tim Stratton of Free Thinking Ministries soon.

So far, a few of the young people in my office have been able to find the podcast or the blog by stalking me. I am thankful that this has not resulted in a trip to Human Resources. I wish I could tell everyone I know about the podcast. It’s pretty fun when people tell me what they think of an episode that they liked. I had a few people who really liked the recent 3-part series on common atheist objections to Christianity. Other people liked the episode on crime, police, guns and self-defense. We also got good reviews for the episode on the gospels. The most popular episode is the one on whether atheists can be moral. I got a bit excited in that one.

Some of my Christian friends are having to deal with major problems. One has cancer, one is  unemployed, one is tied up with legal problems, etc. It really makes me think about using the time I have available to take a stand on every issue that’s interesting. I don’t worry too much about how many people are listening. The important thing is to look in the Bible, make a list of Biblical views and Biblical experiences, then start ticking them off.

I definitely wanted to be on record favoring male-female relationships and natural marriage, for example. So we did two episodes on those topics (6 and 7). We wanted to say something about the right to life of the unborn, so we did an episode (16) on that. Rose and I just want to make sure that we are on record on every interesting topic. It’s fun to talk about all of these topics with Rose. We hope you’re having fun listening, too.

Children in Canada face serious, lifelong consequences while waiting for health care

A friend of mine from Canada messaged me this past week to tell me about her trip to the United States to get surgery. She had to pay tens of thousands of dollars out of pocket herself to get treated. Although she had probably paid tens of thousands of dollars into the Canadian single payer system, when she asked THEM for care, they told her it would be about 2 years before she could get treated.

Here’s a related story from the Globe and Mail, which is the more leftist of Canada’s two national newspapers:

Half of the children in Canada who need surgery are facing waiting times that far exceed clinical recommendations for treatment, a situation experts say could have serious, lifelong consequences for young patients’ development.

The waiting-time numbers, collected from children’s hospitals across the country by the Pediatric Surgical Chiefs of Canada, highlight the immense strain pediatric facilities are under. The burden has also led to overcrowded hospitals, record emergency-room waits and delayed diagnosis and treatment of developmental conditions.

The problem with having a health care monopoly is that it eliminates the need for health care providers to compete with each other to reduce costs and improve quality. In every monopoly, the providers have no reason to innovate, so they don’t. And if you don’t like it, you can take whatever money you have left from taxes and go to another country.

This is horrifying:

Pediatric surgeries are performed in order of how urgent they are, but even urgent procedures are being delayed beyond the recommended windows of time. Pediatric orthopedic surgeries are among the procedures most commonly subject to lengthy delays.

In an e-mailed statement, Ontario Health wrote that, as of Aug. 1, 55 per cent of those on the pediatric surgical waiting list had waited beyond the recommended timelines for their procedures.

Mr. Squires said the most recent Ontario data he has seen show that about 40 per cent of adult patients are waiting beyond the recommended timelines for surgeries.

Consider a 2021 report on wait times in Canada:

Specialist physicians surveyed report a median waiting time of 25.6 weeks between referral from a general practitioner and receipt of treatment—longer than the wait of 22.6 weeks reported in 2020. This year’s wait time is the longest wait time recorded in this survey’s history and is 175% longer than in 1993, when it was just 9.3 weeks.

The waiting time for a referral to a general practitioner to a specialist increased from 10.5 weeks in 2020 to 11.1 weeks in 2021. And the waiting time from seeing a specialist to actually getting treatment  increased from 12.1 weeks in 2020 to 14.5 weeks in 2021.

Something to think about when the secular left tells you that they can improve healthcare by taxing you more, and having a government-run system. The Biden administration thinks that parents are “domestic terrorists” if they object to the education monopoly. They’ll think that you are a “domestic terrorist” if you object to the failures of their health care monopoly, too. Socialism always fails, and when it fails, the people who complain are blamed for the failure. Be careful what you vote for.