The US Department of Agriculture, which provides school lunches, has decided that in order to abide by an executive order signed by Joe Biden on his first day in office, they will link that funding to gender-affirming educational policy.
The USDA announced that "state and local agencies, program operators and sponsors that receive funds from FNS must investigate allegations of discrimination based on gender identity or sexual orientation. Those organizations must also update their non-discrimination policies and signage to include prohibitions against discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation."
What this means is that if a school does not permit biological boys who identify as transgender to use girls' bathrooms, or allow biological boys to play on girls' athletic teams, or permit students to transition their gender at school, then that school will no longer receive federal aid for school lunch programs.
Schools are being held ideologically hostage and will be made to decide whether to cater to the whims of the LGBTQIA+ activists in the White House, or distribute school lunches free of charge. Many kids across the US depend on the free food aid from schools, and many schools provide not only lunches, but breakfasts as well.
The USDA, which lost a lawsuit last year in which American farmers sued them for discrimination over their policy of prioritizing loans and grants based on race, which Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said was a means to right historical wrongs, made their announcement of this new change on May 5.
They wrote that, per that executive order which required agencies to find ways to implement anti-discrimination policy throughout their work, they "will interpret the prohibition on discrimination based on sex found in Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and in the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008, as amended, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly the Food Stamp Program (7 USC § 2011 et seq.), to include discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity."
"USDA is committed to administering all its programs with equity and fairness, and serving those in need with the highest dignity. A key step in advancing these principles is rooting out discrimination in any form – including discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity," Vilsack said.
"At the same time, we must recognize the vulnerability of the LGBTQI+ communities and provide them with an avenue to grieve any discrimination they face. We hope that by standing firm against these inequities we will help bring about much-needed change."
President Biden has been a stalwart proponent of the rights of children to stop their natural puberty, ingest cross-sex hormones, and for girls to surgically remove their breasts because they feel they are actually boys. On the Transgender Day of Visibility this year, which preceded the national Pride Month by some months, Biden said that parents should be on board with it as well.
"...the onslaught of anti transgender state laws attacking you and your families simply wrong," Biden said, speaking of exactly those policies that the USDA will now be able to use to deny food aid.
Biden was speaking about laws passed in many states that protect women's sports from incursion by biological males, laws that prevent doctors from surgically mutilating minors by removing or drastically altering their reproductive systems simply because the child says they believe themselves to be the opposite sex, or from prescribing drugs that would alter or prevent the emergence of secondary sex characteristics in teens, which lead to sterility after prolonged use.
He was also targeting a law passed in Florida that prevents activist teachers from grooming children into adult conversations about sexual orientation and gender identity.
"This administration is standing up for you against all these hateful bills," Biden said.
"And we're committed to advancing change gender equality in the classroom," Biden said, "on the playing field at work in our military, and our housing and health care systems everywhere, simply everywhere."
He encouraged parents of children who come to believe that they are meant to live as the opposite sex to "affirm your child's identity."
"Above all, to be there with you. To parents of transgender children: affirm your child's identity. One of the most powerful things you can do to keep them safe and healthy," he said.
"If there any transgender American who's struggling please know. You're not alone. Parents, children, please ask for help. And know this. You're so brave. You belong and we have your back. God bless you all. Be brave," he said.
Many states across the country have enacted bills to protect women's sports, and to protect children from harmful medical procedures and non-approved drugs used off-label to stunt natural growth in the name of equity. These states will now face the prospect of having the follow their values or receive food aid for their most vulnerable children.
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