Nonbinary birth certificate causes uproar among Oklahoma GOP leaders
After settling a lawsuit, Oklahoma state officials agreed to include a non-binary gender option on updated birth certificates. The change ushered in immediate blowback from conservatives.
The change will allow non-binary people born in Oklahoma to change their gender designation on re-issued birth certificates.
Oklahoma added the option after settling a lawsuit with a non-binary, Oklahoma-born Oregon resident, who had sought the change themself, according to reporting by nonprofit news outlet NonDoc.
Soon after, top elected Republicans including Gov. Kevin Stitt began issuing statements decrying the change. Stitt’s statement, among other things, argued that there are only two genders.
"I believe that people are created by God to be male or female," Stitt said. "Period. There is no such thing as non-binary sex."
Others, including top legislative Republicans, said the process through which the change came to be was improper and should have gotten legislative approval. Many vowed to reverse the change.
House Minority Leader Emily Virgin issued a statement condemning Stitt's comments.
"A national study estimated that 52 percent of transgender and non-binary young people in the United States seriously contemplated suicide last year. The governor’s suggestion that non-binary people don’t qualify as Oklahomans is abhorrent and completely unbecoming of a governor. Moreover, it is dangerous. We are elected to help people not make their lives harder," Virgin said.
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