The doctor started from the Texas Senate after calling transgender people pedophiles

A Houston-area doctor and prominent GOP activist was kicked out of a Texas state Senate Thursday after he insisted on calling all transgender people and their supporters “pedophiles,” according to footage shared on social media.

The video, posted to Twitter by @bobbyeyaga, captured an escalating exchange between Democratic Texas State Senator José Menéndez and Houston MD and Republican supporter Steven Hotze.

“Dr. Hotze, I know you’re a doctor and a professional. I just want to ask you to refrain from calling people pedophiles, because I don’t think the doctors who have come before us today are pedophiles,” Menéndez told Hotze in the video.

Menéndez made the request after Hotze’s testimony in support of a series of anti-LGBTQ laws being considered by Texas lawmakers, according to the Houston Chronicle’s Taylor Goldenstein. Hotze dug his heels in: “By definition they are pedophiles,” he said in response.

Menéndez responded, “I have trans friends, I have trans employees, I have trans members in my community, and what do you do when you call them [pedophiles]it’s very hurtful to them.”

Hotze’s answer? “That’s what they are.”

After a few more back-and-forths—in which Hotze falsely labeled gender-affirmation therapies endorsed by America’s top medical association as “perversions”—Menéndez told Hotze that “[trans people] are not pedophiles, they live as their true selves.”

“That’s bulls–t,” Hotze replied. Republican state senator and committee chairman Bryan Hughes had heard enough by then. “Dr. Hotze, we don’t use that kind of language. You’re excused,” Hughes told Hotze.

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Hotze’s bullheaded determination to label all trans people and their supporters as pedophiles reflects the Texas GOP’s ongoing crusade to criminalize trans people and doctors who specialize in trans medicine: The Texas GOP has already filed dozens of bills aimed at removing legal protections for trans and doctors. LGBTQ people during this year’s legislative session.

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