A group of far-left “transgender” activists recently published a so-called “study” claiming that medical gender-transition procedures are safe for young children, after the group was paid to do so by large pharmaceutical companies that specialize in the production of hormone therapy medications.
The Daily Caller reports that Stanford University published a study on January 12th by the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP), a radical group which repeatedly encourages young children to undergo transition procedures in order to improve their mental health; as such, AACAP is an outspoken critic of recent laws passed in numerous Republican-led states to crack down on such procedures, which are often categorized as child abuse.
Stanford admitted in its press release on the study that the effort was financially supported by the pharmaceutical companies Arbor and Pfizer, both of which produce the kind of hormonal medications that are used to alter childrens’ behaviors when their parents try to “transition” them from one gender to another.
As such, the study by Stanford claimed to find “proof” that alleged “transgender” children who underwent transition procedures, such as surgeries and hormone blocking treatments, experienced an improvement in mental health compared to those who did not receive such treatment. Dr. Jack Turban, the study’s lead author, released a statement accompanying the publication of study declaring that the findings were “particularly relevant now because many state legislatures are introducing bills that would outlaw this kind of care for transgender youth.”
However, in an apparent conflict of interest, Turban had previously received an award from AACAP in May of 2019, when the group presented him with its “Pilot Research Award.”
Speaking out about the double standards and numerous conflicts of interest present in the study, California neurologist Dr. Diana Blum said that “if Pfizer is producing hormone therapies then of course there’s incentives to promote studies that push those. Even though things get published in academic journals, a lot of the funding comes from the pharmaceutical industry.”
Dr. Blum also commented on the flaws present in the study’s methodology. “This was not a double-blind placebo-controlled trial where you can actually say they tested a hypothesis and here’s the conclusion and here’s why you know it’s valid,” she continued. “The Stanford study used surveys. Right off the bat there are confounding variables never taken into account and thus inappropriate conclusions and generalizations are made that may not apply to the patient population studied.”
As such, even a handful of instances recorded in the Stanford study contradicted its own findings that hormone treatments were an overall net positive for children. For example, the study found that teenagers between the ages of 16 and 17 who received hormone therapy were three times more likely to attempt suicide than those who never went through such procedures; the same group was also five times as likely to attempt suicide as those who took such hormones as adults.
Nevertheless, the findings of the Stanford study were widely shared by the mainstream media with little to no criticism. Outlets such as NBC News, USA Today, the Today Show, and Psychology Today all repeated the Stanford study’s conclusions without disclosing the financial ties to pharmaceutical companies or the numerous flaws in its methodology. This, Dr. Blum said, represented the greatest problem of them all: Once the talking points were repeated in the mainstream media, the truth about its flaws became irrelevant.
“Once it’s in the headlines,” Blum said, “it gets people’s attention and no one actually digs deeper into it.”