Tag: dumb drama
In which I blather about dumb shit going around Facebook, right?
Today’s topic: the drama about proposed “bathroom laws” and why it’s a thinly-veiled excuse to punish transgendered people (also, you don’t REALLY care about women being raped)
It’s, like… why is transgendered folks using the bathroom a problem now? They’ve been doing it for years and not much, if any fuss, has been made over it. Only now is it becoming a capital-I issue and, as you can expect, a lot of the naysayers are throwing caution to the wind and letting their hateful flags fly.
The main argument against letting trans people continue as they were is that it would supposedly “let men put on a wig and dress and attack women in the bathroom.” Hi, this happens already. A law or rule enforcing “each gender to their own bathroom” will not put up a forcefield around the doors, scanning everyone to verify their gender. Someone determined to sexually assault another person is going to follow them into the bathroom, rules and laws be damned, full stop.
How would you even enforce such a law, anyway? Hire someone to stand at the door for the sole purpose of verifying one’s gender? For one thing, that would cost money, which of course no site owner will want to eat, so they’ll either bake it into their prices (if a store/restaurant), cut wages, eliminate services, or directly charge for access. Yeah, that’s going to go over well. And, of course, any backlash will cause people to point their fingers (wrongly) at trans people, as if they needed any more reason to inflict scorn and (likely) violence.
Also, people forget that same-gender assault is VERY much a thing. Women attack each other in the bathroom, men attack each other in the bathroom. Pedophiles, who statistically gravitate towards younger boys, attack their victims in the bathroom.
The secondary argument is just outright discomfort and/or transphobia. This one I am marginally less critical of, because at least there’s some shred of honesty (and I have relatively more respect for someone who is honest about their bigotry as opposed to someone who would hide behind religion and other platitudes), but there are a mess of counters for it. You have most likely used the same bathroom as a transgendered person at one point, without realizing it. How many people actually make eye contact with another person in the bathroom, anyway? Most of us just want to get in and out of there as quickly as possible, we don’t really have time to be looking over someone to see if they’re the “correct” gender. Someone who might be trans but doesn’t COMPLETELY pass, well, I might do a brief, quiet double take (because human curiosity) but otherwise go about my business.
A transgendered person is no different from us, they want to get their business over with and be on their way. Why should we make it harder for them, unless it is just a latent desire to punish them? If the naysayers have their way, the end result will backfire SO HARD, because you really would have, oh, a pre-transitioned man in the women’s bathroom. The awkward facepalm is so real.
“Oh, but loopholes! Someone could put on a wig and–” Well, they do that now. Report creepers to security. Carry pepper spray. Learn self-defense! There are existing laws against this behavior! We don’t need to police transgendered folks over a hypothetical (and a statistically-rare, almost impossible) situation that happens more often with straight folks and those of the same gender.
I feel like the sudden concern about women and girls’ safety in the bathroom comes off as disingenuous and even hypocritical. We sadly have a terrible track record when it comes to prevention, investigation and prosecution of sexual assault (as well as support for victims). People (men, really) playing the “safety of women” card don’t really care about stopping the assault on women in the bathroom, because they aren’t willing to go the full distance to actually correct the problem. If you want to really stop women from being raped in the bathroom, you don’t put into place laws against transgendered people, you do things like, oh, teach men to NOT RAPE, for starters. You would take victims seriously, you would actually put funding and effort into investigating and prosecuting those who commit such crimes.
Finally, there are other reasons why unisex bathrooms should be a thing (on top of not bellyaching over transgendered people): single fathers with young or infant daughters, parents of disabled children, people with elderly disabled parents, to name some. Are we going to screw them over some bigotry? I hope not.
You know who IS willing to screw unrelated portions of the population over their bigotry, though: the Lt. Governor of Texas, who is so bent on digging in his heels over this nonsense that he’s going to defy the recent presidential directive to quit interfering with transgendered people’s access to the bathroom. That’s right, he’s so dedicated to his hate that he would sacrifice federal funding for schools to feed it. A lot of that money goes to the free/reduced lunch program there, so he is effectively going to make a lot of children go hungry. He claims that the state will find replacement funds, but we all know that schools are among the first things on the budgetary chopping block, so they’re most likely going to have to go without. What the actual fuck, Texas? Of course, this will also lead to blame unfairly being dumped on transgendered kids for ruining it for everyone, right?
It’s just a freaking bathroom. Let people pee!