Yup, I may have been right in saying “trans is the new black, er, gay, er, group that is being legislated against.” We saw a Bathroom Bill try, and thankfully fail, in South Dakota; there’s one up in Washington, in Georgia, and now, naturally, in Tennessee because Tennessee hates all the letters L,G,B, and T.
Lawmakers there are considering their own anti-transgender bill that is quite similar to the in South Dakota, but it has one special clause that makes it one even more harmful.
This proposed legislation — HB 2414 — states that public schools must require students to use bathrooms and locker rooms that match the sex indicated on their “original” birth certificate; but, unlike South Dakota’s bill, this rule also applies to Tennessee’s public universities as well, impacting students of all ages, even into adulthood.
And by tying the bill to trans person’s “original” birth certificates, it guarantees that no transgender person could ever use the bathroom that fits their gender identity because, in Tennessee, there is no legal way to change the sex on their original birth certificate; in fact, Tennessee is the only state that explicitly prohibits it via a :
“The sex of an individual shall not be changed on the original certificate of birth as a result of sex change surgery.”
Testifying in favor of bigotry and intolerance was Matt Sharp, of the Alliance, who the old fear tactic in his argument about allowing “boys” — which is what he calls trans girls — into a female restroom as an “invasion of privacy and a threat to student safety.”
On the other side, we have LGBT advocacy groups who the legislation for “singling out transgender youth for discrimination,” and we have Grammy–nominated songwriter Gretchen Peters who wrote an op-ed about regretting that she could not affirm her son who first expressed his transgender identity at age 3, but suppressed that identity for 20 years:
“I understand parents who feel fearful around gender issues. The hardest thing I’ve ever had to do is accept that the child I raised as a girl for 26 years was, and had always been, a boy. When we institutionalize this kind of discrimination, we force transgender kids deeper into the closet, shut them off from the support they so desperately need, and very possibly inch them closer to suicide. I don’t like to think about how close my son came to ending his own life. I don’t believe this is what we want for any of our children.”
Trans people just want to use the bathroom that corresponds to their gender identity, and unless the state of Tennessee wants everyone to carry around a birth certificate as a means of access to the bathroom, they’d better think carefully on this.
And if even one trans person takes his or her own life because of this continues intolerance and prejudice and hate, then the state of Tennessee is responsible.
They just want to pee, and I’m betting that any trans person who enters any bathroom with one of these Tennessee bigots, or even Matt Sharp himself, would be hard-pressed to say who is, or isn’t, trans.
They just need to pee.