Last Updated on April 27, 2022
On Tuesday, Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt signed a bill that bans nonbinary identification on state-issued documents. With the bill, SB 1100, being signed into law, Oklahoma became the first state to explicitly ban the terminology on government documents.
“The biological sex designation on a certificate of birth issued under this section shall be either male or female and shall not be nonbinary or any symbol representing a nonbinary designation,” reads a stipulation in the bill.
Governor Stitt previously issued an executive order that halted such practices this past November. The order was issued after a nonbinary person from Oklahoma successfully sued to get their birth marker changed to an “X.” The health department issued the amended birth certificate as part of a settlement agreement with the plaintiff.
“I believe that people are created by God to be male or female. Period,” Stitt said at the time. “There is no such thing as nonbinary sex, and I wholeheartedly condemn the purported [Oklahoma State Department of Health] court settlement that was entered into by rogue activists who acted without receiving proper approval or oversight.”
The governor then urged the Oklahoma legislature to mirror his executive order, which they ultimately did.
A handful of states, including South Dakota, South Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Texas already limit gender designations to be either male or female. Oklahoma is the first state to enact a complete ban on the use of nonbinary markers on official identity records.
State Senator Micheal Bergstrom, who co-sponsored the bill, called the legislature’s actions “common sense.”
“We must stand up and put a stop to this nonsense regarding biological sex,” Bergstrom said in a statement. “It’s not a complicated issue – biologically, you’re either a male or female. There should be no other option to choose from on a birth certificate.”
Oklahoma Rep. Mauree Turner, the nation’s first “openly nonbinary” lawmaker, accused legislators of using their power to “attack” LQBTQ Oklahomans.