Anti-Trans Extremism: The Far Right’s New Strategy to Spread Hate
Mainstream far-right actors are escalating a nationwide campaign to eliminate the trans community from American society – a dangerous threat to trans people and one that portends broader attacks on the LGBTQ+ community, other minorities, and our democracy.
WHAT IS ANTI-TRANS EXTREMISM?
Today’s far-right extremist campaign against trans rights, and LGBTQ+ rights more broadly, seeks to remove trans people from public spaces. Throughout history, attacks on the trans community served as a harbinger of extremist efforts to control, limit, and erase other minority communities from society.
The current campaign uses state and local legislation to limit trans rights and even criminalize members of the trans community. As of June 2023, over 80 anti-trans bills had passed in the U.S., up significantly from 26 in 2022. Anti-trans policies also harm other minority groups. For instance, book bans and educational policies that target LGBTQ+ content often incorporate attacks on materials that discuss racism and the history of Black and Brown communities in the United States. Anti-trans extremism spans time and space. Nazi Germany targeted trans people, derailing the progress of gender affirmation surgery and destroying a vibrant social community. In 1933, Nazis set fire to the Institut für Sexualwissenschaft, destroying an LGBTQ+ library that included pioneering trans medical research. Far-right mainstream leaders are spearheading this campaign, including politicians like Governor Ron DeSantis, Senators Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz; media pundits like Matt Walsh and Ben Shapiro; and organizations like Moms for Liberty and the Family Research Council.