VANCOUVER, British Columbia (BP) — A father in Canada has committed “family violence,” according to a Canadian court, for referring to his teenage daughter as a female in spite of her desire to transition to a male gender identity.
The Supreme Court of Canada’s British Columbia province issued a “protection order” barring the father from referring to his daughter publicly or privately by her birth name or female pronouns. He also was barred from “attempting to persuade [her] to abandon” her gender transition, according to an April 15 court ruling.
The father and daughter both are referenced only by their initials in court documents, which apply masculine pronouns to the girl.
The teen “is an at-risk family member who is highly vulnerable,” Justice Francesca Marzari wrote. “I find that [her] father’s expressions of rejection of [her] gender identity, both publicly and privately, constitutes family violence against [her]. Finally, I find that [the father’s] conduct in this regard is persistent and unlikely to cease in the absence of a clear order to restrain it.”
The daughter is 14 years old and has identified as a male since age 11, according to a previous British Columbia Supreme Court ruling in the case. With her mother’s help, the teen sought medical assistance with a gender transition in early 2018.
The parents are separated and have joint custody of the teen, according to media reports.
After a Canadian doctor said he would begin testosterone injections on the girl without parental consent, the father asked a Canadian court to intervene, the conservative publication The Federalist reported.
In February, British Columbia Supreme Court Justice Gregory Bowden, rejected the father’s plea, ordering that the teen receive testosterone injections. Bowden further ordered that “attempting to persuade [the teen] to abandon treatment for gender dysphoria; addressing [her] by [her] birth name; referring to [her] as a girl or with female pronouns whether to [her] directly or to third parties; shall be considered to be family violence.”
The father immediately appealed Bowden’s decision, Canada’s National Post reported, and that appeal is pending.
The father told The Federalist following Bowden’s ruling, “The government has taken over my parental rights. They’re using [my daughter] like she’s a guinea pig in an experiment.” Is the hospital treating her “going to be there in five years when she rejects [her male identity]? No they’re not. They don’t care.”
When the teen’s lawyer asked the court to stop her father from speaking about the case, Marzari granted the request and issued a protection order barring him from referring to his daughter as a girl. According to the conservative website The New American, the father could face arrest if he disobeys the order.
The father’s lawyers called Marzari’s order “draconian” but said he will obey it while they prepare an appeal, The National Post reported.
Marzari’s ruling quoted the teen as stating, “I love my father. I want to have his name as my middle name … But I cannot be around him unless he respects who I am and my gender identity. It messes with my head and I cannot stand his berating me all the time. I am concerned for my physical and emotional safety around my dad, and very worried what he will do.”
R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, lamented that the father has been “criminalized for speaking the truth.” Yet parental rights, Mohler said, are the most important issue at stake in the case.
“The courts are willing now to invade parental rights and to nullify parental rights, because the moral revolution is now taking precedence even over the sacredness and the respect for the relationship between parents and their own minor children,” Mohler said today (May 1) in his podcast The Briefing.
“So looking at this headline news from Canada, there’s no good news at all. There’s no ray of hope whatsoever,” Mohler said. “Everything in this story points to very ominous developments.”