Trans

Anti-Unisex Bathroom Law in North Carolina Challenged in Lawsuit

Here's a radical idea to end bathroom panics: Don't let the government discriminate, and let businesses set their own policies.

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http://goqnotes.com/

I would gladly move to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea—North Korea—if that would guarantee that I'd never have to read another story about the existential threat to the American Way of Life posed by letting the estimated 0.03 percent of trans people pick whichever toilet they feel like using. Call me naive, but I assume such issues are beneath the concerns of the god-like Kim Jong-un, who like his father doesn't need to defecate or urinate.

The latest battleground in bathroom panic is North Carolina, where, as Scott Shackford noted, the city of Charlotte was on the verge of passing legislation that would have banned discrimination in housing and public accommodations (including restaurants, hotels, movie theaters, and the like) on the basis of "sexual identity and gender identification." So naturally the Republican-controlled legislature pushed through a law, happily signed by Gov. Pat McCrory, that bars all Tarheel municipalities from extending any anti-discrimination protections to lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and trans (LGBT) people.

Within 48 hours of passage, "The Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act," is already the target of a lawsuit with plaintiffs who range from a student, a staffer, and a professor at various branches of the University of North Carolina and claim the law traffics in "invidious discrimination." "Lawmakers made no attempt to cloak their actions in a veneer of neutrality, instead openly and virulently attacking transgender people, who were falsely portrayed as predatory and dangerous to others" reads part of the lawsuit.

But supporters of restrictive bathroom laws usually insist it's not because they don't dig the LGBT crowd, you understand. They're just really worried about gender-integrated toilets. As the press release issued by the governor's office put it, "Governor McCrory Takes Action to Ensure Privacy in Bathrooms and Locker Rooms." You might expect McCrory and his conservative brethren in the state legislature to defer to the wisdom of local elected officials. That's part of the Republican catehcism, isn't it? Devolve power to the most local and hence most representative level possible.

But not in this case, because we're talking about…basic bodily functions, which clearly and absolutely need to be legislated by the top men in Raleigh and not by the uncivilized rubes in Charlotte. "This new government regulation defies common sense and basic community norms by allowing, for example, a man to use a woman's bathroom, shower or locker room," explained the governor, who then exhorted those same incompetents to get back to work. "The mayor and city council took action far out of its core responsibilities…It is now time for the city of Charlotte elected officials and state elected officials to get back to working on the issues most important to our citizens."

Yeah, whatevs. As if it's a "core responsibility" of any governent at any level to tell us where we can shit, shower, and shave. As a libertarian, I'm not fond of anti-discrimination legislation that moves beyond dictating terms to governments and publicly funded operations. So, for instance, I believe that as long as governments insist on being in the marriage-certifying business, they should issue licenses to any two people who request them. Publicly funded schools, hospitals, parks, and the like should also be held to strict non-discrimination standards even as I don't think the government should have the right to tell private businesses who they can or cannot serve, hire, or fire.

That's not because I long for the days of segregated lunch counters but because I fear a government powerful enough to tell us how to run our business will start to, I don't know, dictate how we can do our business. Indeed, it might even force us to buy health insurance in heavily regulated exchanges and forbid us from even offering unisex bathrooms (like the ones most of us have in our homes) in our businesses.
In fact, as my Reason colleague Elizabeth Nolan Brown wrote in 2014, widespread gender segregation of bathrooms isn't a fact of nature, as anyone who has traveled abroad or grew up in a single-family household could tell you. In the United States, it's actually been mandated in most places by an ever-increasing thicket of federal, state, and local laws that got their start in 19th-century Massachusetts. "In many places," wrote Brown, "businesses are legally prohibited from offering only gender-neutral restrooms.  A small restaurant, coffee shop, or bar with only two (separate, enclosed) toilets must designate one for women and one for men. New York City only made it permissible in 2012 for restaurants and coffee shops with just two water closets to make these unisex, and only then for places with a total occupancy of 30 or fewer. Washington, D.C., is one of the few places where it's actually illegal to designate single-occupancy restrooms as male- or female-use only."

The same drama that is playing out in North Carolina is being staged in various ways all across the country, especially as the trans community becomes more visible. Last year, a Florida state legislator would have forced business owners to make sure that patrons only used bathrooms for the sex designated on their birth certificates or else be open to lawsuits from offended customers. Last fall in Houston, voters flushed an anti-discrimination initiative aimed at adding LGBT residents to already protected categories after a steady of dose of bathroom scare stories. Don't you know, said the opponents, that this will encourage men to dress up as ladies, camp out in bathrooms, and then attack your daughters (as one political ad on the matter explicitly argued)? 

Strangely, despite a steady growth in unisex bathrooms—over 150 universities now provide gender-neutral showers and bathrooms in residence halls, and some major cities are relaxing their building codes–that bathroom-based crime wave never seems to appear, does it? When I was in college in the early-to-mid 1980s, the idea of shared bathrooms and showers was unthinkable. The floors in my dorms at Rutgers had boys and girls living on them, but the bathrooms and showers were also kept for one gender only. Lo and behold, when my older son started college four years ago, his residence hall at Ohio State had single-seat bathrooms and single-stall showers that any gender could use. Problem solved.

In fact, despite the panic in North Carolina, there are signs of sanity breaking out on the issue. A few weeks ago, South Dakota's Republican Gov. Dennis Daugaard vetoed a bill banning trans students from using locker rooms and bathrooms that didn't match their birth sex. His reason was the obverse of North Carolina's McCrory. A state-wide policy, he said, "does not address any pressing issue concerning the school districts of South Dakota. As policymakers in South Dakota, we often recite that the best government is the government closest to the people. Local school districts can, and have, made necessary restroom and locker room accommodations that serve the best interests of all students, regardless of biological sex or gender identity."

That sounds about right to me. What's the old libertarian saying? Get government out of the boardroom–and the bedroom! Sadly, we need to add and the bathroom these days, due to panicked conservatives whose understanding of government's "core responsibilities" too often leads them into places that are none of their business.

Will there be some difficult practical issues in figuring out how to live in a world beyond gender-segregated bathrooms and locker rooms? Sure, but given the overwhelming comfort that most Americans already show toward the trans population—a 2011 poll poll found that 86 percent of Republicans agreed that "transgender people deserve the same rights and protections as other Americans"!—that doesn't seem like much of an obstacle to making the world a slightly more welcoming place for people who really need to relieve themselves.

And if it proves an intractable issue—Ted Cruz is no shrinking violet on this matter—there's always North Korea, where the lack of food means you really don't use the bathroom that often (even if you're not nation's celestial being of a leader) and the lack of media freedom means the topic would never come up in the first place.

NEXT: Remembering Tibor Machan

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  1. when taking a leak is a political statement, you have created a society that may well deserve Trump.

    1. Piss on Trump!

        1. Hombres

  2. So, Nick is defending accommodation laws here? Is the jacket choking off oxygen to your brain or what?

    1. “Here’s a radical idea to end bathroom panics: Don’t let the government discriminate and let businesses set their own policies.”

    2. Which is what the North Carolina bill does. The Charlotte and local initiatives placed restrictions on businesses. The state bill only applies to government buildings.

      1. But it is what Nick believes he is arguing.

      2. Then Nick is wrong and incoherent. So I go back to my initial comment/question on whether he’s getting enough oxygen to his brain of late.

      3. Like public pools: Google “Man undresses in girls locker room with underage girls Seattle”. Gosh, who didn’t see that coming. Answer: all the leftists who are foisting their unscientific views on society.

        Idiocy

      4. “Which is what the North Carolina bill does. The Charlotte and local initiatives placed restrictions on businesses. The state bill only applies to government buildings.”

        Correct. However, the bill also takes away local control from local municipalities to create their own laws, which is a concern for those who advocate local control.

        Further, the bill actually reinforces restrictions that already exist in terms of anti-discrimination laws on gender, race, religion, national origin, etc. Shouldn’t libertarians be concerns about this?

      5. “True” libertarians are incoherent for supporting a bill that actually reinforces existing anti-discrimination measures.

  3. I blame Ally McBeal for this.

    1. I wonder how unisex bathrooms would go over in a real workplace.

      1. We have them in our admin offices. Two single seaters. There isn’t a problem.

        Now, a multi-seater would present a different issue.

        1. and multi-seaters are what I am getting at.

          1. Harassment complaints, EEOC actions, lawsuits, outrage, etc.

    2. I think you meant The IT Crowd

    3. What does that dumb dancing baby have to do with this?

    4. Would, if she lost a few.

  4. Isn’t the ‘bathroom panic’ fight a proxy battle?

  5. I believe that as long as governments insist on being in the marriage-certifying business, they should issue licenses to any two people who request them.

    Hmmmm…

    1. so there goes the polygamist support, eh?

      1. What are the Mormons, chopped liver?

        1. in Nick’s world, it seems so.

      2. It takes 3 certificates for a triad.

  6. Turn the bathrooms into storage closets, and let your customers go down the street to McDonald’s to take a shit.

    1. +1 permanent “Out of Order” sign

  7. So, I’m trying to understand Nick’s take. He goes on some great little tirade on he is opposed to private businesses being subject to accommodation laws, yet the characterization of North Carolina’s bill creates the impression that private businesses are being imposed on here somehow. The bit on bathrooms only applies to government agencies. The rest of what was done here prevents local governments from enacting labor laws…this isn’t shit libertarians would normally oppose or care much about.

    The government should be welcoming to transgender folks and let them use bathrooms of their choice. The rest of this bill? It’s not discrimination. It’s not interfering in private matters. It’s preventing other levels of government from doing that in the name of fighting discrimination.

    1. and to a large degree, the Charlotte measure was activity disguised as action. It addresses a problem that does not exist. The bathroom part became the focal point because there was no actual discrimination going on that could be pointed out. Sure, the Council approved an ostensibly “anti-discrimination” measure because it’s usually not politically helpful to be cast as pro-discrimination.

      Unless, you’re discriminating against certain folks (/sarc)

    2. I’m a college student who was forced to take some leftwing bullshit activist classes. One involved having to listen to a transgendered student preach SJW bullshit. A child asked their mother if they were a male or female (the horror!). It was society’s responsibility to pay for the sex change they wanted. If that meant destroying the capitalist world order, so be it. And there was only one unisex bathroom on campus (it’s not a particularly large campus). Despite no one actually caring which bathroom they used regardless.

      What got me was this notion that the entire campus and all regulations should be geared around accommodating the dozen or so transgenders on campus.

      I also have to admit that I was really puzzled by a female transitioning to become a man who was still attracted to…men. So, basically, they identified as a gay man.

      Suicide rates/attempts among transgendered are also society’s fault. And don’t you dare suggest that pumping yourself full of hormones and such may not be the healthiest thing in the world and play a role there.

      1. after a while, it’s hard to not to say “so you’re just an attention whore, aren’t you, because I can’t imagine why anyone would actually care where you peed.”

        The Kultur Warz are typically about forced acceptance of something that not everyone accepts. There may be a right or a principle involved but, usually, it seems to boil down to one group using the blunt force of govt to force its will on others.

      2. “I’m a college student who was forced to take some leftwing bullshit activist classes. One involved having to listen to a transgendered student preach SJW bullshit.”

        You weren’t “forced” to take any class, much less attend any university. Libertarians should be careful with the word “force.” You’re against government force, right? Who “forced” you to take this class, much less go to this college?

        “What got me was this notion that the entire campus and all regulations should be geared around accommodating the dozen or so transgenders on campus.”

        “I also have to admit that I was really puzzled by a female transitioning to become a man who was still attracted to…men. So, basically, they identified as a gay man.”

        It can be puzzling if you don’t know anyone who is transgender or gay, or both. I suggest attending a PFLAG meeting. You may find that your views may change if you get to know somebody who is different. You may find that that it could be challenging for yourself, and, perhaps, rewarding.

  8. Fun polling data:

    The latest Rasmussen Reports poll revealed that 46% of American adults favor laws banning any discrimination against transgender individuals. This covers employment, housing and public accommodations. Only 34% opposed such laws and 21% were undecided.

    But when the issue of allowing men claiming to be women being allowed to use women’s bathroom and showers, the support for the anti-discrimination laws drops from 46% to only 24% and opposition rises from 34% to 56%.

    To no surprise, more Democrats (59%) support anti-discrimination laws to protect transgenders while only 35% of the Republicans support it. When asked about transgender men using ladies’ bathrooms, Democratic support dropped to 39% and Republican support plummeted to 10%.

    http://godfatherpolitics.com/m…..tion-laws/

    1. Letting men use the women’s bathroom is about the dumbest hill reason could choose to die on. Nick of course is just the man to go and die on it.

    2. Outside the religious right, the ones I’ve met who have the biggest issue with this are females. I doubt many or any males I know would give a fuck about a transgendered man using the bathroom with them.

      1. Most men are happy to have women see them naked.

        There is no such thing as “transgendered”. You are what your genes are. To say otherwise is to embrace an absurd form of dualism whereby there is some “you” that exists outside of your body. The whole thing is insane. The “transgendered” are just saying they are a “female soul trapped in a man’s body” or vice versa. it is complete fucking nonsense and should be ignored.

        1. There is no such thing as “transgendered”.

          Phew, thanks for clearing that up for us.

          1. Does your DNA not mean anything? Are your brain cells different than the rest of your body?

            Is there anything you won’t believe no matter how irrational?

            1. DNA means a lot. Hence the “trans.”

        2. The “transgendered” are just saying they are a “female soul trapped in a man’s body” or vice versa.

          Hmm. So this might fall under discrimination based on religion?

        3. I have plenty of issues with the nonsensical arguments I encounter with regards to the transgender issue, but I really don’t give a shit. It’s none of my concern and I have no issue being polite and calling a person by whatever name/pronoun they prefer (as long it isn’t some made up bullshit like xe – I aint learning that).

          There is no realistic threat posed here and the entire gender division in bathrooms is progressive regulation that stretches back a century now. Let private businesses decide their bathroom set-up on their own.

        4. So if someone has a DNA predisposition for criminal behavior, we should indulge them?

        5. Gender and sex are different things. Gender is a social construct, sex is genetic. A person is male because of chromosomes; a person is a man because he drinks whisky neat and enjoys the smell of burnt cordite. Maybe you have twigs and berries but you prefer to be feminine; that’s not “trans” anything, that’s just femininity. Maybe you’ve got a vajay and you enjoy belching and bar fights; same diff, you’re not transwhatever, you’re just a tomboy. The only reason it’s a thing in our culture is because we’re moving from a norm where males are supposed to be masculine and females are supposed to be feminine.

      2. Outside the religious right, the ones I’ve met who have the biggest issue with this are females.

        I’d even go so far as to say, barring women using the bathroom in front of men openly (and vice versa) Even the religious right is pretty accepting/tolerant of this.

        At least, I’ve been in plenty of ‘one-room’ churches that had a single bathroom that I just assumed to be unisex.

  9. I believe that as long as governments insist on being in the marriage-certifying business, they should issue licenses to any two people who request them.

    Yeah, that is why reason has published so many articles in support of sibling marriage and getting rid of the age of consent. I mean “any two people” right? And just how vocal has reason been for the cause of Polygamy over the last year? Polygamists go to jail. Yet, reason seems to publish about 10 articles about bathrooms for every one article about polygamy. In fact, I can’t remember the last time they talked about polygamy, though they do claim to support it.

    Beyond that, Nick’s position seems to be that no one, not even children in schools have any right to object to showering with the other sex. If girls don’t like showering with a boy who claims to be a girl, according to Nick they can go fuck themselves or go to a private school, though if anyone thinks private schools are going to excape the wrath of the tranny activists, I have a bridge to sell them. Of course, the school can spend the extra money to build everyone their own shower. That is not a problem everyone knows money isn’t fungible and schools print their own./

    1. They will be advocating polygamy soon because being cool requires whooping for an ever growing range of the “unusual”. They will have to agitate for NAMBLA sooner or later to stay good thinkers.

      1. It’s been a negative stereotype of libertarians for generations that they support polygamy and consensual child-molesting. Just doesn’t get as much press as the messicans, pot & ass-sex.

    2. If they could fuck themselves, then….

  10. a 2011 poll poll found that 86 percent of Republicans agreed that “transgender people deserve the same rights and protections as other Americans”!

    I wasn’t aware that Republicans had a reputation for wanting to remove rights and protections from people, even those people that they disagree with.
    But no, if you didn’t bash the Republicans for being racist homophobes who want to take transgendered peoples’ rights away, well someone might think you actually (gasp) agree with Republicans on something, anything, and we can’t have that, can we?
    Seriously, Nick, it would have been a much better article without the mandatory Republican bashing.

    1. Nick’s argument is disingenuous. Opposition to accommodation laws in no way contradicts the poll result there that people support the same rights for transgendered as everyone else. Accommodation laws grant extra privileges and protections. Nick is employing double think nonsense.

    2. I wasn’t aware that Republicans had a reputation for wanting to remove rights and protections from people, even those people that they disagree with.

      for the left, that reputation among Repubs is an article of faith.

      1. Yes, and for the Editor in Chief of a libertarian magazine to trot out the same stereotype actually reinforces the stereotype, which helps allow progressives to continue to label anybody who disagrees with them as bigots.

    3. “a 2011 poll poll found that 86 percent of Republicans agreed that “transgender people deserve the same rights and protections as other Americans”

      I certainly agree that transgender people deserve the same rights and protections that I have.

      1. You have the right to use the bathroom for the gender with which you identify. Good to know you think transgender people deserve the same.

        1. where did that “right” come from? You have a right to the bathroom where your genitals say you belong. Alternatively, dress so that no one can tell. I doubt most men would care anyway. Some women may see it differently.

        2. No. You have the right to use the bathroom for the sex indicated by your genitalia and your chromosomes. And transgender people have that right just as much as everyone else.

          Where did this idea come in that what bathroom you use was determined by your “gender” and not by your biological sex? Certainly not by most of the people who set up those bathrooms in the first place.

          1. I wasn’t aware that I had a right to use a bathroom that wasn’t my own period. Or a right to a bathroom. In fact, I don’t think you know what a right is.

            There really weren’t gendered bathrooms before the government intervened and regulated it.

            1. with public restrooms, seems that using them would be an implied right.

            2. I was responding to Homple. Of course using someone else’s bathroom is a privilege.

              So we agree that if the government gets out of it, the issue will go away? Good.

              Now, what if the government does not. Given THAT constraint, what is the right thing?

              1. The North Carolina bill here? It’s as close to keeping the government out of it as we can get. It’s a law that prohibits local governments from acting stupidly. I’m not going to oppose it for the moronic and incoherent reasons outlined by Nick.

                There’s nothing in this bill that I’ve seen that a libertarian following the NAP should be opposed to.

              2. For the record, I don’t think I have a right to use anyone else’s bathroom or anything they own with their permission subject to their restrictions on what I may or may not do with it. If somebody doesn’t want me draining my dick in a room they reserve for women’s use, so be it. And just telling the owner that I don’t believe I have a dick shouldn’t change the owners mind,

                1. Above to Brochettaward|3.28.16 @ 7:48PM

        3. IMHO, you don’t *actually* have a right to use a bathroom.

          IF someone lets you use their bathroom, that’s none of the government’s business.

        4. I don’t believe that the facilities I am supposed to use have anything to do with what I identify as but what sex I am,

        5. Where do you get the idea that bathrooms have to do with what you think you are rather than what you are?

  11. Here we have a public accommodation law (bad) that, in some places, would be crossways with mandates on bathrooms (also bad).

    Naturally, the libertarian thing to do is (a) not pass the public accommodation law and (b) repeal the other mandates.

    Which is pretty much what Nick seems to be arguing for, although there’s a lot more pixels on repealing the other mandates than not passing the public accommodation law. Good enough for me, though.

    Oddly, though the law effectively repealing the new public accommodation law gets slapped around for being overbroad. Which is weird, because it achieves a libertarian result, even though the emotional support for it comes from a non-libertarian place. Again, good enough for me.

    Just like repealing marriage licensing laws is a good thing, and if it passes based on emotional support from a non-libertarian place, I’m OK with that. Its not like libertarians can be super-picky about the motivations of people who vote for doing the right thing.

    1. it’s like Milton Friedman once said: part of politics is getting the wrong people to do the right thing.

  12. The thing with bathrooms is that the equipment in them is often related to whether you have a penis or not.

    I mean, sure, I guess it doesn’t matter for a woman’s bathroom, but it’s going to be even more messy if a woman tries to use a urinal.

  13. Have we come so far that this is an actual issue?

    1. Yes because the culture war never ends. Settle this issue and the progs will pick up a new one and Nick will be there to cheer them on.

      1. If you guys only stuck with loving thy neighbor, progs would not have to keep picking new issues to push back against your hate of the Different.

      2. This is true…I went to a small, well regarded liberal arts college in the 70’s. My dorm was coed, men and women together room by room. We had 4 bathrooms, the two on the end were either sex, the two in the middle were single sex.

        It wasn’t a problem, when it came to showers most women save a couple prefered not to shower in the unisex restroom, though I sat next to many a gal that was comfortable taking a shit or piss next to a guy in the private stalls. My friends didn’t give a fuck, the fieldhouse had a sauna and we’d go down there as a group and get naked late at night, probably a dozen people who sometimes hooked up afterward. No victims, no problems, back then the victim culture for was not developed. Had a great relationship with a girlfriend who turned out to be a lesbian, when I thought about it I wasn’t surprised . Was really nothing about me and if it made her happy I was glad it worked out for her as I was her friend more than a lover.

      3. This is true…I went to a small, well regarded liberal arts college in the 70’s. My dorm was coed, men and women together room by room. We had 4 bathrooms, the two on the end were either sex, the two in the middle were single sex.

        It wasn’t a problem, when it came to showers most women save a couple prefered not to shower in the unisex restroom, though I sat next to many a gal that was comfortable taking a shit or piss next to a guy in the private stalls. My friends didn’t give a fuck, the fieldhouse had a sauna and we’d go down there as a group and get naked late at night, probably a dozen people who sometimes hooked up afterward. No victims, no problems, back then the victim culture for was not developed. Had a great relationship with a girlfriend who turned out to be a lesbian, when I thought about it I wasn’t surprised . Was really nothing about me and if it made her happy I was glad it worked out for her as I was her friend more than a lover.

      4. This is true…I went to a small, well regarded liberal arts college in the 70’s. My dorm was coed, men and women together room by room. We had 4 bathrooms, the two on the end were either sex, the two in the middle were single sex.

        It wasn’t a problem, when it came to showers most women save a couple prefered not to shower in the unisex restroom, though I sat next to many a gal that was comfortable taking a shit or piss next to a guy in the private stalls. My friends didn’t give a fuck, the fieldhouse had a sauna and we’d go down there as a group and get naked late at night, probably a dozen people who sometimes hooked up afterward. No victims, no problems, back then the victim culture for was not developed. Had a great relationship with a girlfriend who turned out to be a lesbian, when I thought about it I wasn’t surprised . Was really nothing about me and if it made her happy I was glad it worked out for her as I was her friend more than a lover.

      5. This is true…I went to a small, well regarded liberal arts college in the 70’s. My dorm was coed, men and women together room by room. We had 4 bathrooms, the two on the end were either sex, the two in the middle were single sex.

        It wasn’t a problem, when it came to showers most women save a couple prefered not to shower in the unisex restroom, though I sat next to many a gal that was comfortable taking a shit or piss next to a guy in the private stalls. My friends didn’t give a fuck, the fieldhouse had a sauna and we’d go down there as a group and get naked late at night, probably a dozen people who sometimes hooked up afterward. No victims, no problems, back then the victim culture for was not developed. Had a great relationship with a girlfriend who turned out to be a lesbian, when I thought about it I wasn’t surprised . Was really nothing about me and if it made her happy I was glad it worked out for her.

    2. forced conformity know no bounds. I keep saying a nation wherein taking a leak is a political statement is a nation for whom the likes of Trump seems deserved.

    3. How long before we start seeing demands that “public accommodation” of trannies means they should have their own bathroom?

      1. Would that be one for the “female” trannies and one for the “male” trannies? Or would they be forced to use just one unisex trannie bathroom?

      2. “How long before we start seeing demands that “public accommodation” of trannies means they should have their own bathroom?”

        ^ This really is the ideal solution, as the public construction projects to make this happen will keep our economy good and stimulated for the foreseeable future.

        1. The way it will work is, any public accommodation business that does any remodeling at all will have to put in a third bathroom.

          For some, it just won’t be possible given their footprint. For others, it will be ruinously expensive.

          For Great Social Justice!

      3. They do. As far as I can tell, the demands are contradictory with some wanting unisex bathrooms and some wanting choice. Or both. I can only really tell that they seem to want something different or which reaffirms their lifestyle completely.

        1. or which reaffirms their lifestyle completely.

          this. Which seems the basis for most SJW kerfuffles.

      4. They should have their own waterfountain, too. AMIRITE?!?!?!?!

  14. The problem with the “government shall not discriminate” view is that ultimately as government makes public control of everything a reality, there will be no way to discriminate on anything.

    I feel there will be need to distinguish between those public institutions that enforce the law and those that don’t. How that would be done is not clear to me.

  15. Here’s a radical idea to end bathroom panics: Don’t let the government discriminate and let businesses set their own policies.

    Ask bakers how that works out.

    1. and a component of the GA proposal was meant to protect ministers. As an aside, more than a few straight folks can testify to being turned down by a particular preacher when trying to stage a wedding and for various reasons: scheduling, not a member of the congregation, etc.

  16. The irony of all of this is that in the case of the business, it’s a patron that complains, forcing the proprietor to do something about it.

    In the ensuing kerfuffle, the patron isn’t charged with civil rights violations, the proprietor is. The complaining patron doesn’t even get their name in the paper. It’s just ‘x’ business had ‘y’ transgender tossed from ‘wrong’ bathroom.

    1. This is even worse/more far-fetched; the idea that a business could even *think* that and that a government would *allow* them to is beyond the pale.

      All of the people involved in the lawsuit are, and have been, actively using restrooms as they desire without whatever restroom badge they want the state to issue. Somehow, anti-anti-discrimination laws *will* run rampant and they’ll be forced to use catheters and colostomy bags in a broom closet or go to the bathroom in another state.

    2. It’s their duty to dispose of this matter.

  17. Caption that photo!

    “Guess where I peed.”

    1. “Who thinks I washed my hands?”

    2. The sink?

    3. “Bathroom Attendants Union Rep Herbert Trudie Weights In On Genital Checkpoint Law”

  18. As policymakers in South Dakota, we often recite that the best government is the government closest to the people. Local school districts can, and have, made necessary restroom and locker room accommodations that serve the best interests of all students, regardless of biological sex or gender identity.”

    That sounds about right to me.

    No. Consider this in terms of expropriating funds and compelling association. Simplified: Government takes away funds from 100 people (same amount) and builds a school for them. 90 people want sex-segregated bathrooms. The other 10 people want to compel association: to get access to the men’s bathroom. Why in the world would one support such compelled association, and against the will of those who pay the most? Assume the 90 offer to pay for three bathrooms, two (A,B) for themselves, and one (C) for the 10 other people. Would you support that the 10 have the right to use bathrooms A and B against the will of the 90 people?

    1. when has compelling association ever stopped the SJW? When the SSM battle was going on, some of the 90 in your scenario offered up civil unions, something that a good many straights with no particular religious bent would have also gone for. But no, that was deemed as something lesser than the m-word and it was all about that word.

      What is different here? Some of the ten may be content with C but you know others will want A or B, and act as if some existential right is being denied by 90 insensitive clods. They will howl, they will attract outside attention, anyone who disagrees will be cast as a bigot, eventually some of the 90 will move for appeasement just to shut the 10 up.

      But I am willing to be wrong

      1. I hadn’t thought of applying this to marriage. Appreciate that. In principle, it applies.

  19. That’s not because I long for the days of segregated lunch counters but because I fear a government powerful enough to tell us how to run our business will start to, I don’t know, dictate how we can do our business.

    I would accept the sincerity of your thoughts if it wasn’t for the fact that the North Carolina bill is actually preventing government from telling US how to ‘run our businesses’. Or didn’t you read what you just wrote:

    ?The latest battleground in bathroom panic is North Carolina, where, as Scott Shackford noted, the city of Charlotte was on the verge of passing legislation that would have banned discrimination in housing and public accommodations (including restaurants, hotels, movie theaters, and the like) ?

    How is a hotel a “public accommodation”, unless I can stay without paying? Or a restaurant? Can you sleep inside a restaurant, or sit down in a table without buying a meal? If *I* have to pay, then it is NOT a “public accommodation.”

    You make it sound like a perfectly harmless ordinance but the Charlotte city council wants to do is PRECISELY what you’re admonishing the North Carolina legislature for: dictating BUSINESSES how to conduct their business.

    For instance, if *I* decided that my ‘public accommodation’ will NOT accept that strange men enter a bathroom *I* built for my female customers, then WHO THE FUCK IS THE CHARLOTTE CITY TO TELL ME OTHERWISE, NICK????

    1. I’d just add again as I have stated above, the state bill has no impact on private accommodations of any kind. Nick’s argument is moronic. He talks about being opposed to government interference, but endorses the law that forces private establishments to accommodate transgendered individuals and admonishes the state bill that prevents that.

      1. Re: Brochettaward,

        Because Nick is a libwap who believes libertarians should embrace anti-discrimination. He’s of course confusing libertarianism with individualism. I’m an individualist; I don’t believe people’s character is defined by meaningless traits. But I am also a VOLUNTARYST – I do NOT believe in anti-discrimination laws regardless of the intentions behind them, because these a) presuppose discrimination is evil (which is not) and b) presupposes people have a right to other people’s wares. Another way of saying it: anti-discrimination laws serve to violate a person’s right to property and to freely associate with others.

        You can be a libertarian and still hold collectivist notions about people. You can be a libertarian and be a misanthrope. You can be a racist, a xenophobe, a misogynist, and still be a libertarian, as long as you do NOT commit acts of aggression against others. You can be an individualist and believe that each of us is unique, man or woman; black, white, yellow, brown, olive-skinned, purple, it matters not. But you cannot confuse the two. Yet don’t become a good libertarian by accepting everybody and their deviations. You’re not a libertarian because you’re an individualist. That’s not how it works.

        1. This old chestnut? Guess what. People tend to interpret the NAP based on their prejudices and reasons for accepting it in the first place.

  20. Serious question: When transgender people claim that they “identify” as a man or as a women, just what exactly do they mean by “man” and “woman”? It certainly doesn’t mean “person with male (or female) genitalia” or “person with male (or female) chromosomes.” Nor does it mean person who acts in particularly masculine or feminine ways (because we all know that those are stereotypes that have no general validity). As far as I can tell, a “man” is simply someone who chooses to call theirself a “man,” and a “woman” simply someone who chooses to call theirself a “woman.” In other words, the definitions of those terms are completely circular.

    1. Most of those same people will then turn around and tell you that gender itself is a social construct with a portion of those believing it’s something ‘society’ should do away with. We shouldn’t be encouraging gender based stereotypes to begin with. They speak out of both sides of their mouths.

      It’s an issue I couldn’t care less about, but it has nothing to do with government.

      1. For an issue that you don’t seem to care about, you sure seem to be writing a lot of comments about it.

      2. Don’t care about transgenders. Do loathe progressives and their ‘anti-discrimination’ laws addressing fantasy issues which are authoritarian in nature and try to force all of society to adopt their version of right-think.

    2. As far as I can tell, a “man” is simply someone who chooses to call theirself a “man,” and a “woman” simply someone who chooses to call theirself a “woman.”

      Seriously? There is nothing else in your mind that defines whether one is a man or woman? Maybe you’re being sarcastic and I’m missing it, but calling it a choice makes it an arbitrary thing that flexes with how I feelz on a particular day.

      1. We’re struggling with trannies in the hospital. The way I’ve explained it to our staff is this:

        There is medical reality, and social reality. The medical reality is we have to know what they were born as, and what equipment they still retain. It can make a big difference to treatment whether you are genetically male or female, hopped up on hormones, and still have testes or ovaries. So we have to ask these questions.

        The social reality is that we will refer to them by the name and pronouns they prefer. Of course, housing them in shared rooms is a frikkin’ nightmare; fortunately, we should have enough private rooms that we don’t have to, but that amounts to giving them a preference for the more desirable rooms, which is discrimination in its own right.

        1. I sympathize with your having to deal with “social reality” in a scientific setting.

      2. No, I have a very firm idea of whether one is a man or a woman. The problem is, the gender theorists tell me that my firm idea has no validity. I haven’t been able to figure out what their definition is, or how it can avoid being circular and thus meaningless.

  21. So government buildings cannot have sex segregated restrooms, locker rooms, or showers? Public schools cannot have sex segregated sports teams?

    What Gillespie is proposing here is rather radical and dismissive of how people actually live.

    1. Would you call it a “fundamental transformation”?

  22. Last fall in Houston, voters flushed an anti-discrimination initiative aimed at adding LGBT residents to already protected categories after a steady of dose of bathroom scare stories.

    First of all, it wasn’t an anti-discrimination initiative; it was an initiative that would’ve mandated all business owners within the Houston area to let strange men enter the restroom that THE BUSINESS OWNERS BUILT for THEIR FEMALE patrons.

    You make it sound so ‘harmless’ for the simple reason that you’re obviating the BUSINESS OWNERS’ PROPERTY RIGHTS. Oh, why burden yourself with such arcane concepts when transgender people could be discriminated against (all three or four of them)? The initiative was not meant to protect anybody but to create another magnet for shady lawyers. Just like the ADA.

  23. I see Nick is drinking his own urine again. You should really stop that, Nick.

  24. “Anti-Unisex Bathroom Law in North Carolina Challenged in Lawsuit”

    Except that I read the law, and it’s not “anti-unisex.” It specifically says that public schools and agencies must have 2 bathrooms corresponding to the 2 biological sexes. It also says such places aren’t banned from having more types of bathroom.

  25. “That’s part of the Republican catehcism, isn’t it? Devolve power to the most local and hence most representative level possible.”

    I don’t know, but it sure isn’t part of *Reason’s* catechism. You’d have to be a libertarian Hans Kung to twist the doctrine into supporting local governments passing “public accomodations” laws.

    1. It seems as much of a strawman as defining “judicial restraint” as absolute deference to the legislature and executive instead of deference to the Constitution and law as written and then attacking conservatives for not adhering to the former definition.

      1. And in this context “the most local and hence most representative level possible” is the private business or private association whose policies are in question.

  26. Incidentally, I double-checked, and as far as I can tell, the government of North Carolina isn’t telling *private* businesses to exclude trannies.

    The oh-so-politically-correct private colleges in the state are denouncing the new law, while admitting that private colleges can grant “trans rights” in their own bathrooms.

    “Several private colleges in North Carolina condemned the new law and assured their students it does not cover their campuses.

    “”As a Quaker college that has historically worked to oppose discrimination and is guided by our core values, we deeply lament the passage of this harmful bill and remain fully committed to affirming the lives and experiences of LGBTQ community members and providing a welcoming and inclusive educational environment for all,” wrote the president of Guilford College, Jane Fernandes.

    “Guilford, as well as Elon, Duke and Wake Forest Universities, all said last week that students on campus were free to use whichever restroom aligns with their gender identity.

    “Wake Forest University and Davidson College’s presidents took to Twitter to reassure students and faculty members.” [etc.]

    1. Incidentally, the Quakers used to have separate Men’s and Women’s Meetings, defining men and women based on biological sex.

      “Forsooth, Hezekiah, we hath told thee, thou mayst not join the Women’s Meeting.”

      “How many times must I telleth thee, my name is no longer Hezekiah, it is Priscilla!”

  27. Riiiiiiiiiiight. And companies that don’t go along with the lunatics’ delusions are going to get sued. The state shouldn’t need to make these laws, but in this day and age, we need them to protect against weirdos and lunatics who seek to impose their LIFESTYLES on regular people. don’t worry. Justice Kennedy will discover a constitutional right for men to piss the ladies’ room soon enough.

  28. Blame our oppressive or benighted parents for sticking us in the bathtub together!

  29. So, for instance, I believe that as long as governments insist on being in the marriage-certifying business, they should issue licenses to any two people who request them.

    Monogamous Normative!

  30. When I was in college in the early-to-mid 1980s, the idea of shared bathrooms and showers was unthinkable.

    Did Nick go to Liberty University? Squaresville, daddyo!

    Reed College, integrated bathrooms in 1983. Interesting to have a little chit chat with a gal at the sink while I was taking a whizz next to her at the urinal.

  31. It seems like an unintended consequence of this law is that someone who appears to be male could always claim to have been born female, and thus required by law to use the women’s restroom…

  32. Close all the bathrooms and have everybody just shit on the floor.

    1. Username on point, here. Well done.

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  34. So as a believer in the NAP, am I supposed to back the city government that says that I have to make accommodations, or the state government that says they can’t make me do that?

    Its almost like Nick’s telling me that the state barring the city from violating the NAP against me is bad because the people at the state level passing that law are using bad arguments? It’s almost like Nick’s saying I should support coercion if the people who happen to be against coercion are against it for the wrong reasons?

    1. It’s like Hitler vs. Stalin. Sometimes there aren’t any good guys.

  35. It is not about bathrooms. It is about ramming transgender issue down the throats of the public with the army of lawyers to follow.

    Up next, the kiddie park doesn’t want to hire the guy with a beard and a dress? Here come the lawyers.

    Disregard the fact that a month after Seattle passed the same law, some old lech walked into the public pool dressing room for girls and started undressing. That won’t happen, but it did, but it won’t, but it already did,…

  36. 0.03% of trans people. Plus anyone who can and will fake it. Unless of course there will be someone to do a psychological or metaphysical screening at every bathroom in America, or check an ID card that has your identity on it.

    Why not just have government-provided diapers for everyone?

  37. Turn it around; why should society bend over backwards for a tiny percentage of the population that is cracked enough to deny physical reality? If you are born with one set of genital, all the wishing in the world isn’t going to give you the other. And if you allow yourself to be persuaded to have an operation, you haven’t switched genders; you have been mutilated. Period.

    Now, I have a lot of sympathy for people who aren’t what they dream of being. Some of those transformations are possible. But some of them just aren’t. Not at this level of technology. Maybe soon, but not now.

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  40. let businesses set their own policies.

    That much we can agree on.

    Don’t let the government discriminate,

    I don’t know what would count as “discrimination” by the government here. Is treating people equally according to their biological sex discrimination? If so, then we need to turn the entire sex discrimination legal regime upside down.

    The latest battleground in bathroom panic is North Carolina,

    Somebody needs to ask why the transgender community is panicking over using the bathroom of that matches their sex.

    But supporters of restrictive bathroom laws

    In NC, the law applying to private business is “do what you want”. Is that a restrictive bathroom law, or is the law mandating what businesses do the restrictive bathroom law?

    As if it’s a “core responsibility” of any governent at any level to tell us where we can shit, shower, and shave.

    And the NC law recognizes that it is not a core responsibility of government to do that, and prohibits local governments from doing that.

    What a shitshow of an article, Nick.

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