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CA Mom Begs SCOTUS to Protect Parental Rights After Gender-Confused Daughter's Suicide


A California mom who lost her daughter to suicide after losing custody because she did not celebrate her gender dysphoria is now urging the Supreme Court of the U.S. (SCOTUS) to protect parental rights to save other children from the dangers of gender ideology.

First Liberty Institute, a non-profit public interest law firm, has filed a friend-of-the-court brief at the Supreme Court of the United States on behalf of Abigail Martinez.

The brief provides support in M.C. and J.C. v. Indiana Department of Child Services, a pivotal parental rights case that is seeking a Supreme Court review of Indiana's decision to remove a child from the home of Christian parents because of their religious beliefs about sexuality.

As CBN News reported, Martinez lost custody of her teenage daughter, Yaeli, because her religious beliefs on sexuality conflicted with her daughter's gender disorder.

"My daughter was murdered by a gender ideology. CPS took my daughter when she was 16 years old. It was helped by her public school counselor and LGBTQ group and another trans-identified girl," she testified during a California Judiciary Senate hearing in June. 

"My daughter was taken from her loving home because the state of California claimed I was abusive for not affirming her trans identity. I lost my daughter over a name and pronouns. Even after I promised to call her a male name, it wasn't enough," Martinez continued. 

A few years later, her daughter committed suicide. 

Martinez spoke at a forum hosted by the Heritage Foundation last year and shared the events that ultimately led her 19-year-old to take her own life by kneeling in front of an oncoming train.

"The school counselor was involved, DCFS (Department of Children and Family Services) was involved, LGBT was in there too, trying to 'help' my daughter on the transition of being transgender," Martinez shared. "I was accused that I didn't want to open my eyes since she felt since she was a little girl that she was a boy which was not true. She was not even close to a tomboy ... she was the girlie girl in the house." 

Martinez said she met with the school principal and counselor but they actually made things worse. After a failed suicide attempt, her daughter was placed in foster care and then started going by the name of Andrew.

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"The school psychology and LGBT told DCFS that my daughter would be better off out of the house," the distraught mother said. "They took away my daughter when she was 16-years-old. I tried my best to get her back... going to court every single month."

She continued, "When I went to court, I asked the judge to please let my daughter have a psych evaluation." But since her daughter's social worker said she needed to be acknowledged as transgender, the judge denied Martinez's request. 

Instead, the judge ruled that she could receive cross-sex hormones, going against Martinez' expressed wishes that her daughter receive the mental health treatment she needed for underlying depression. 

Martinez said an LGBT group encouraged her daughter to transition to a male identity and told her that the state of California would pay for her surgeries. 

"'This was the best time to do it,"' they told her daughter, "'because if you don't do it right now, nothing is going to make you happy. You're unhappy with your body, you hate your body so you go for it.'"

Martinez said she urged the courts to focus on the mental health crisis rather than the gender identity issue and to "help her from the inside out."

She added, "What hurt me the most was that I was told not to talk about God." 

A social worker warned Martinez that talking about God "was going to make him (Andrew) feel uncomfortable because he's in danger of committing suicide."

But it was too late.

Her daughter died at the age of 19.

Martinez says she does not want any other parent to endure the heartache she has experienced. 

"I want everyone to know the truth because it didn't have to happen," Martinez said last year. "I don't want this to happen to any other family or to go through all this pain. There's a lot of pain."

According to First Liberty's brief, "States violate the Free Exercise Clause when they target religious families because of their sincerely held beliefs. Parental rights are closely linked with free exercise rights and are especially strong for religious families seeking to teach their faith to the next generation. For nearly 100 years, the Supreme Court has reaffirmed the 'enduring American tradition' of 'the rights of parents to direct 'the religious upbringing' of their children.'" 

"When governments usurp the essential role of parents in the lives of their children, tragedy ensues," said Kayla Toney, Associate Counsel for First Liberty Institute. "The Constitution ensures that states cannot target parents because of their religious beliefs, interfere with the religious upbringing of their children, or impose prior restraints on speech in their own homes." 

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