The LATimes recently ran an article by Robin Abcarian in its L.A. Now section entitled Right wing frenzied over transgender students choosing bathroom.
Of course the target of all the hate is specifically the School Success and Opportunity Act, better known as AB 1266…and incidentally the state’s transgender students.
The School Success and Opportunity Act, the first of its kind in the nation, did not sit well with California’s waning conservative Christian base, which has lately been in danger of becoming the political equivalent of the polar bear stranded on the ice floe.
Now there’s an interesting image.
Specifically, the bill says:
A pupil shall be permitted to participate in sex-segregated school programs and activities, including athletic teams and competitions, and use facilities consistent with his or her gender identity, irrespective of the gender listed on the pupil’s records.
When the bill was passed and signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown, the uproar was nearly instantaneous. There was outrage, I say…outrage!…over the “Co-ed Bathroom Bill” not heard since the fear of co-ed restrooms was used to doom the Equal Rights Amendment.
God made us male and female. You just don’t choose gender.
–James Dobson, Focus on the Family
The status of the referendum campaign generated by the Outrage and championed by the Pacific Justice Institute and the National Organization for Marriage is being followed by both sides. As of the morning of December 10, 76.75% of the randomly inspected ballots have been declared valid. That would indicate that only 471488 of the 614317 signatures would project as being valid, which would be over 33,000 signatures short of the number required for the referendum to be put on the ballot next November.
Political consultant Frank Schubert, who also led the campaign to pass Prop 8, says that they are not going down without a fight.
I’m not predicting anything at this point. We are going to fight for every signature.
Major contributors to the campaign include the Calvary Chapel in Chino Hills, Fieldstead & Co. of Irvine, and the largest single contributor, hedge-fund executive (Equinox Partners) Sean Fieler of Princeton, NJ. Fieler has donated $200,000 of the $500,000 the campaign has raised.
California’s religious conservatives have had a hard go of it lately – they were stung after their successful effort to outlaw gay marriage via Prop. 8 crumbled in the courts. They have to contend with a a Democratic supermajority in the Legislature. And now, adding insult to their injury, California has codified the notion that gender is not an immutable fact of biology.
The Pacific Justice Institute paints a picture of men abusing girls in school restrooms with school’s powerless to stop them.
After having their scare stories disproven, the PJI simply responded that the very presence of transgender girls in girls’ restrooms was harassment.
All of this is damaging to society. They are using those children to advance an agenda to strip society of all gender norms and to move down a path where men and women are considered to be interchangeable, where gender is an irrelevant fact, something that’s fungible and flexible.
–John O’Connor, Equality California
That’s what I figured. My guess is we’ll have a genderless society right after we have a color-blind society, i.e. never.
They need a bogeyman. Like gay marriage – ‘It’s going to ruin traditional marriage and be the downfall of society.’ Just switch out the words. ‘Full inclusion of transgender people is going to ruin gender normality for everyone.’ It’s fear mongering.
Since 2005, I have not had a single instance of somebody pretending to be transgender so they could have, during fifth period only, access to a restroom. We have had such positive experiences. We really have.
–Judy Chiasson, coordinator of the LAUSD Office of Human Relations, Diversity, and Equity
In Schubert’s world:
Seems to me it would be a cruel joke to tell a gender confused child who is being bullied that the solution to his problems is to go use the girls’ bathroom. That would result in more bullying, not less.
If the law stands, you can expect that children who balk at welcoming an opposite-sex child into the locker room or bathroom will be reprimanded and singled out for being hurtful and transgender-phobic. The normal kids will be ‘the problem.
—Rebecca Hagelin, Townhall
The PJI is openly seeking parents who can get their kids to testify that they have felt threatened by the presence of some transgender kid in a restroom.
If that child can validate that this transgender has expressed their intention to use the opposite sex’s bathroom or locker room or showers, and they’re willing to come alongside to be a plaintiff at our action … then they should contact us because that gives us standing to be able to have a preemptive action.
We’ve been through Prop. 8, which the state celebrated when it went down. We don’t want to do this again. This is simply at odds with what California stands for.
I think O’Connor is right. In California, the battle over LGBT civil rights is basically over.
Some folks just haven’t figured that out yet.
I find myself wondering who is the victim here. The best case PJI and others have managed to dig up has resulted in a transgender student becoming suicidal: hardly the predator they had hoped to paint her as.
So now, in order to attempt to fight AB 1266, PJI is party to a witch-hunt, trying to track down transgender students based purely on hearsay and speculation, in the hope they can be party to a federal lawsuit to overturn the law. All of this while Privacy for All Students cannot presumably garner enough signatures with a deceptive campaign claiming that AB 1266 forces “co-ed” facilities onto elementary students.
This is the chilling part. If you are a transgender student in the state of California right now, know that these are the people who are seeking to harm you. They’re trying to get any student in your school to turn to them, potentially breaking any confidence you may have had to rob you of your rights.
—Gwendolyn Ann Smith, Bay Area Reporter
The idea that transgender people want to destroy gender is absurd. We don’t want to eliminate it. We want to liberate it. We want to liberate all of you…and all of “them”. We want a world in which people can express their gender in whatever way they choose, so long as it is harming nobody else.
Almost none of the transfolk I know live genderless lives, but rather live lives immersed in gender. And so do most of you, my readers. The question is, “Should you get to decide how you will live your gender, or should that be decided by other people….decided by “cultural norms” that we are born into…and therefore had no say in adopting.
As things stand right now, none of you have the freedom to be who you want to be. So when you see us fighting for our rights, please know that we are fighting for your rights as well.