On Tuesday, Texas State Troopers held down and handcuffed several protesters against legislation that would prohibit transgender youth from being prescribed puberty blockers and hormone therapy.
Though red-shirted supporters of Senate Bill 14 were relatively quiet and seated in the House gallery, Republican Speaker Dade Phelan ordered the entire loft vacated when bill opponents went out of control. One opponent of the bill even lowered his pants and “mooned” the House floor below.
The bill itself was pulled down on a point-of-order — likely due to a misspelling of a national psychiatric association cited in the legislation — and is expected to be reheard on Friday.
What happened at OUR #txlege today is unacceptable! The right was forced to leave because radical trained opposition set in place to disrupt was allowed! The grassroots wont forget! #txgop pic.twitter.com/0fJjF7BoDX
— Naomi Narvaiz (@nytxnn) May 2, 2023
It was easily the most firey day of the 88th Texas Legislature, with opposing sides singing and chanting. The event is being referred to by certain supporters as “the transurrection,” a tongue-in-cheek reference to the 2021 U.S. Capitol break-in and election certification protest as an act of insurrection.
According to the Texas Tribune, minimal charges were made, but a staff member of pro-youth gender surgery group Equality Texas, was banned from entering the Capitol for a year after she unrolled a massive banner that read “Let trans kids grow up” from the second floor of the indoor rotunda.
In a scene that reminded one of an abortion-related standoff in 2013 (when doors to the capitol were locked and the gallery cleared), Texas Values President Jonathan Saenz was hazed by bill protesters while headed up a stairway to the House floor with supportive signs in hand.
A bit of a tense moment outside the Texas House chamber when Jonathan Saenz, the president of the conservative group Texas Values, walkee in front of LGBTQ supporters with signs that read “stop gender mutilation” while taking a video. #txlege pic.twitter.com/uy5QuLDuX3
— Sergio Martínez-Beltrán (@SergioMarBel) May 2, 2023
It was an angry divide that could have been avoided, the Senate Bill’s House sponsor said, when the intent is to protect children.
“They [parents] were given a false dichotomy choice between ‘it’s either this or suicide,’” Rep. Tom Oliverson said last month during the committee hearing for House Bill 1686, his companion bill for SB 14, and according to the Texas Tribune. “The science doesn’t support that. It is unconscionable to me that a licensed health care provider would put a parent in that position.”
Jarvis – you believe this is acceptable behavior in the TX House Chamber?!
I don’t think so my friend.
This is the people’s House. Not animal house. #txlege https://t.co/6Gbu5oqaTF pic.twitter.com/bGdFSFc8Uh
— Jeff Leach (@leachfortexas) May 2, 2023
Another day in the Texas Capitol. #txlege pic.twitter.com/sBCP8q9Prc
— Young Conservative Federation (@YCFederation) May 2, 2023
Keep it classy, Austin.