Family Research Council Senior Fellow Peter Sprigg testified Tuesday before the Maryland Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee regarding Senate Bill 449, a proposed gender identity bill that would add "gender identity" to the characteristics protected in Maryland's laws regarding discrimination in public accommodations, housing, and employment.
In his testimony, Sprigg said:
"I have compassion for those who suffer from gender identity problems. I do not underestimate the pain that people experience when they want to be, or believe that they are, something different from their biological sex. However, the solution offered, or implied, in the bill simply will not be effective in easing that pain.
"A person who believes they are, or wishes to be, the opposite sex from that which is written in the chromosomes of every cell of his or her body, is suffering from a disconnection with an immutable biological reality.
"The solution to this problem is not actions—up to and including self-mutilating surgery amputating healthy body parts—which will reinforce this disconnect with reality. The solution is compassionate counseling aimed at helping the individual to uncover the psychological roots of their gender identity problems, and to become comfortable with one's actual biological sex.
"I understand the motivation behind this bill—the sponsors are concerned about the pain in the lives of these individuals, and hope that this intervention will ease that pain.
"While I share that motivation, I must oppose this bill because it will not work. This bill would force the state and private actors—employers, landlords and others who provide public services—to officially and legally affirm the very delusion that puts these suffering individuals at odds with reality. Not only will it not make their lives better, but it will prevent them from getting the very help they do need to make their lives better."