Guest Post by Becky Behrends, M.D.
Vice President of Research for Michigan Citizens for Election Integrity (

Will the last one to leave California please remember to turn out the lights?

Heterosexual Democrat Kamala Harris and her husband celebrating CA Gay Pride Parade.

The middle class has already been leaving California in droves and flooding into the intermountain west. Most of the fly-over, sensible middle-class Americans roll their eyes over the policies of the land of the kooks and the crazies which we call California. The only ones who don’t seem to comprehend how far off the balance beam they are- are the kooks and crazies themselves!

Heaven help us!

The latest bit of assault on taxpayers’ wallets is the Guaranteed Income for Trans People program (GIFT) in the not so hard to guess city of San Francisco. It uses taxpayer dollars to provide a $1,200 monthly check for up to 18 months to low-income transgenders. Why? Because they “experience much higher rates of poverty and discrimination.” The cash transfers, unlike with other aid programs, are unconditional. The recipients can spend the money as they see fit without limitations. They will also be provided with gender-affirming medical and mental health care and financial coaching.

And those applying for the program get to choose from 97 different genders and 18 preferred pronouns on the application paperwork! Wow!! Sounds like an even better deal than Baskin-Robbins 31 flavors or even the famous Heinz 57 ketchup! But, wait……..there never really were 57 varieties, but 57 was only used as a marketing ploy as a “mystical, magical, and memorable” number! Only in San Francisco could 97 genders likewise be regarded as magical and wonderful, even though NOT real!

And if one checks the intersectionality boxes, one really gets rocketed to the top of the list for consideration. That is- transgender, but also black or indigenous or people of color (BIPOC) or homeless, or gender non-conforming, etc., etc. There are even checkboxes for ethnic variants, such as for “Ninauposkitzipxpe,” which, in the Blackfoot American Indian language, means a “manly-hearted woman.”

A similar program was started earlier in the year in Palm Springs. It was signed off on by the city’s transgender mayor, “Lisa” Middleton. No strings were attached to that cash bonanza that was doled out to transgenders. Mexican drug cartels are just around the corner in the California desert extending all the way down to San Diego. If you want drugs, you now have the tax-subsidized cash to pay for them.

“Lisa” Middleton

No serious thought that much of the transgender poverty stems from drug abuse and destructive behavior choices, which interferes with their ability to hold down productive jobs. Middle-class taxpayers pick up the tab while they struggle to keep up with the cost of living.

A California law that took effect in 2021 has prompted hundreds of transgender prison inmates to put in a request to be transferred to a facility that aligns with their gender identity.

Leftists are increasingly pushing proposals for Universal Basic Income (UBI). But the unintended consequences are forbidding. What if 10-20% of the population chooses to opt out of the workforce, content with their UBI? Who says that $1200 a month will be enough? People will always want more; that’s just human nature. What happens if the amount dispensed is not universal? That is, suppose Transgender “Tom” gets more than Straight Sam. Political and social resentment is already in place over whichever “victim” of the day gets first place in the UBI handout line, such as transgenders. The covid pandemic has accelerated this trend to UBI as a political football to attract voters, no doubt. Democrats are all in on this. What happens when the public finds out it is no longer economically sustainable? More taxes on the middle class.

People have wondered for decades if there is intelligent life on Mars. Instead, they should be concerned about the dearth of intelligent beings in California. Transgenderism is now the “new black.” Let’s parade them, glamorize them, sing their praises, and protect them from mean-spirited conservative, traditional “extremists,” etc. And then reject them if they have buyer’s remorse and want to detransition later in life. Sorry, Charlie or Charlene, whichever it is!

So, to rethink the opening statement of this op-ed. Don’t worry about turning out the lights if you leave California. They went out long ago.

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