Curtis Anderson, Professor at the BYU Law School, is currently an official board member of the LGTBQ group Encircle. Dedicated to providing “resources and support to LGBTQ+ youth,” Encircle gives many services, most free of charge. According to their website, Encircle provides “affirming therapy for BIPOC LGBTQ+ people [ages] 12+,” “letters for affirming care,” “identity information,” “mindfulness,” and many other services.
Most questionable is Professor Anderson’s support and advocacy for an organization that provides “gender-affirming therapy” and “letters for affirming care” while teaching at a religious institution that doctrinally opposes such actions. “Letters for affirming care” are typically written to doctors and surgeons petitioning a surgical operation to change the sexual/physical appearance of an individual to better conform with their “gender identity.” Templates can be found online of such letters, usually describing the individual’s gender dysphoria, gender nonconformity, or desire to be relieved of their discomfort and distress. The organization writing the letter typically assumes a position of authority on the matter, thus influencing the surgeon or doctor’s decision.
As stated in the Church’s General Handbook, “Church leaders counsel against elective medical or surgical intervention for the purpose of attempting to transition to the opposite gender of a person’s biological sex at birth.” The General Handbook also addresses “social transitioning” as such: “Leaders also counsel against social transitioning. A social transition includes changing dress or grooming, or changing a name or pronouns, to present oneself as other than his or her biological sex at birth.”
Before teaching at BYU Law, Professor Anderson was a Senior Vice President and the General Counsel of the Match Group, including match.com, Tinder, Meetic, People Media websites, okcupid.com, Twoo, tutor.com, and The Princeton Review.
Both Professor Anderson and the J. Rueben Clark Law School were contacted for comment on the matter, neither of whom responded.
Written by: Jacob Christensen
Editor-In-Chief at the Cougar Chronicle
The Cougar Chronicle is an independent student-run newspaper and is not affiliated with Brigham Young University or The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.