by Ben Johnson
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 2, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The ACLU and homosexual lobbying groups have joined with a radical lawyer to file a challenge that would force Medicare to offer taxpayer-funded sex change operations.
The ACLU, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, and Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders filed an administrative challenge to a 1981 provision that protects U.S. taxpayers from footing the bill for such surgeries.
The groups claim that Denee Mallon, a 73-year-old Army veteran, suffers from “severe gender dysphoria” – a condition the American Psychiatric Association (APA) still considers a mental disorder.
The timing of the appeal raises eyebrows. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) had placed a notice on its website asking for public comment on the ban last week, often a move taken before changing a regulation. The notice was removed from its website on Friday after generating significant media controversy.
Brian Cook, a CMS spokesperson, told a homosexual publication, “In light of the challenge, we are no longer re-opening the national coverage determination for reconsideration.” The challenge was filed last week.
The ACLU and homosexual media insist the two initiatives were independent and the timing coincidental.
In effect, the move ends public input on the matter. The Department Appeals Board of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will now review the appeal and determine whether the ban stays in effect. If not, it will result in taxpayer-funded sex changes through Medicare.
The Williams Institute estimates there are 144,000 transgender people currently on Medicare.
If every transsexual the institute claims is on Medicare sought such treatment, it would cost approximately $3.3 billion in taxpayer funds. That cost does not include lifetime hormone treatments.
The pricetag, although not large by Washington standards, adds to an already overtaxed Medicare program. Medicare is set to go bankrupt by 2024 – or 2016 if lawmakers do away with double-counting of provisions of the Affordable Care Act, known as ObamaCare. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services reported last April that “expenditures have exceeded income annually since 2008 and are projected to continue doing so under current law in all future years.”
Experts who have no moral objection to sexual transition treatment say it is often unnecessary for those who experience gender identity confusion. Dr. Kenneth Zucker, who chaired the APA task force that proposed the designation of “gender dysphoria,” told LifeSiteNews.com that “there are some people for whom it comes and goes, or goes away completely,” with or without psychiatric treatment.
However, the reversal has long been a goal of transsexual organizations.
Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality, called the procedure “legitimately necessary surgery.” NCTE lobbies for a national “civil rights” bill to punish “discrimination” against transgender people, “age-appropriate, inclusive curricula” about transsexuals in the public schools, and policies allowing transsexuals to use the school restrooms and lockerrooms of their choice.
The motion was filed by Albuquerque lawyer Mary Lou Boelcke, who is the New Mexico contact for the National Lawyers Guild. Congress once described the NLG as “the legal bulwark of the Communist Party.”
Boelcke recently signed a petition to free Lynne Stewart, a terror lawyer who was convicted of passing a message from convicted terrorist Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman to an Egyptian-based terrorist organization. In her 2003 keynote address to the NLG, Lynne Stewart praised “modern heroes” such as “Ho [Chi Minh] and Mao [Tse-tung] and [Vladimir] Lenin, Fidel [Castro], and Nelson Mandela, and John Brown, [and] Ché Guevara.”
The change of venue, from a public discussion to an internal forum, fits the Obama administration's history of promoting transgender policies through executive fiat. The ban, National Coverage Determination 140.3, took effect in 1981.