John Oliver has a new conservative in his scope: Alabama governor Kay Ivey.
Ivey has been the ire of transgender advocates nationwide since her April 8th signing of the Vulnerable Child Compassion and Protection Act, a law that makes prescribing or administering gender-affirming medication to transgender minors in Alabama a felony, punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
“The [law] is absolutely appalling… No one should ever receive criminal punishment for providing healthcare to young people,” Oliver said on Last Week Tonight on Sunday.
The bill was partially blocked by a federal judge last Friday who said the state’s evidence presented in the bill was not credibly persuasive.
Oliver took to task the common argument propping up similar anti-transgender youth medication laws: the idea gender-affirming medication exacts irreversible harm on youth.
“Its supporters – like many transphobes – fixate on the surgery part of transitioning even though, for the record, transitioning is far more expansive than that, may not entail surgery, and when it does is none of your business,” Oliver said.
The host played a clip of pediatrician Dr. Morissa Ladinsky telling Alabama legislators that healthcare providers have never performed genital surgery in the state, that puberty-blocking medication is 100% reversible and can be life-saving, and that hormonal therapy is only administered to older minors after lengthy informed consent and mental health oversight.
Oliver surmised conservative efforts to ban gender-affirming care is some sort of “right-wing virtue signaling” with no thought given on how much more harm than good it will do.
Summarily, the British American host had a sympathetic message to the trans children of Alabama.
“You are important. Your lives are important. I can’t imagine trying to build self-esteem in childhood as your own government attempts to undermine your very existence. You should know you are profoundly valuable and irreplaceable,” Oliver said.
For the governor of the Yellowhammer state, he had a slightly different message.
“As for Kay Ivey: what the f*** is wrong with you… The people in Alabama deserve a lot better than you.”