Trans

N.C. Trans Bathroom Law Survives as Fingers Get Pointed Everywhere

Both sides claim dishonesty from their foes.

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HB2 protesters
Chris Seward/TNS/Newscom

Oh, no! I've written fake news! Based on what both sides in North Carolina were saying, I blogged with a high level of confidence that North Carolina's HB2 was going to be rescinded.

At the start of the week it really did seem like the legislature would rescind the controversial law that blocked cities from adding new categories to nondiscrimination laws and required trans people to use school and government-building facilities that matched the sex listed on their birth certificates. Outgoing Republican Gov. Pat McCrory called a special session, and it really seemed like it was going to happen. The compromise was that Charlotte would repeal its additions adding gender identity and sexual orientation to its discrimination laws, and the state would repeal HB2.

But then apparently everything went to hell. Charlotte's City Council did indeed rescind its law, but apparently not cleanly, and Republican legislators were left with the impression that they were going to look for a way to sneak it back into play. Charlotte officials say this wasn't the case. The city's site insists the law has been completely rescinded.

By yesterday afternoon Republican lawmakers had developed a new proposal. In order to rescind HB2, they wanted to implement a "cooling off" period for six months prohibited cities from doing the same things that HB2 forbid (amending antidiscrimination and public accommodation laws). Essentially, even after rescinding HB2, they wanted to keep the law in place for another six months.

In the end, nothing was passed or rescinded. HB2 will remain on the books. Charlotte rescinded its law for nothing (particularly since HB2 overruled it anyway).

How to interpret this from a libertarian perspective? As somebody with a dim view of what both Charlotte and the state legislature did, I'd say the ones who have lost out the most from this fight are transgender public school students. With HB2 still in place, schools are forbidden from fully accommodating transgender students (unless they've gotten their birth certificates changed, which frankly is an unnecessary imposition of government regulation of gender expression). While the law also forbids accommodation in other non-school government buildings, I'm going to guess there's probably not going to be a lot of "policing" there and not a whole lot of concern (studies suggest that men are more concerned about the safety of women in bathrooms than the women themselves are).

The entire fight could end up being moot eventually, as there's a legal push in federal courts to rule that discrimination on the basis of a person's status as transgender is already covered by federal bans on sex-based discrimination. There are some federal rulings in their favor, and the Supreme Court has accepted a transgender student's fight to use the boys' bathroom in his Virginia school for the next term. Technically, the incoming Donald Trump administration could vacate the case by rescinding the Obama administration's orders telling schools they have to accommodate trans students. But there are other federal cases about whether transgender issues are covered under federal sex discrimination laws, and it seems inevitable there will be a precedent established by the Supreme Court within the next few years.

There's been a thread of a libertarian-based argument that it should be OK—proper even—for North Carolina's state legislature to intervene and prevent cities from passing laws that restrict liberty. In this case, Charlotte's legal update required local businesses to accommodate transgender facility use. It was a mandate not just on government recognition but a violation of local business's freedom of association.

Larger governments telling local government what kinds of laws they can pass is bad, and I say that regardless of whether I support whatever law. If there is a civil liberty that is being violated, it needs to be tackled under a constitution or charter and then pushed to a court to rule upon. Why on earth should politicians outside of Charlotte have veto power over the laws of that city? Note in this coverage from the Charlotte Observer, a Republican senator dismissively saying he wants to prevent laws the "lunatic left of the city of Charlotte and other places want to enact." That senator is from Wilson, more than 200 miles from Charlotte.

When the citizens of the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union, there was a big public debate over whether it was appropriate to allow its citizens such a vote. At the time I defended having a Brexit vote, arguing that the choice of who has the authority to use government force to regulate you is a fundamental component of democracy.

Even when I presented that argument, I knew full well that leaving the European Union didn't necessarily mean that British people would be more "free." And under its new Prime Minister Theresa May, the United Kingdom has implemented a law that granted itself some of the most intrusive surveillance authorities in the Western world. The European Union just this week declared that the country's intrusive data retention laws are unlawful. That is to say, the European Union is more concerned about British citizens' rights to privacy than their own national government.

It's still, though, the right of British citizens to decide whether they want to be part of the European Union. That I am probably not going to like some of the outcomes doesn't change my opinion.

When I bring that attitude back to North Carolina, it should be up to the citizens of Charlotte to decide what sort of additions to discrimination laws should function in their city. If their council members are not representing their constituency properly, that's a matter for elections (and for other forms of cultural and economic pressure, like boycotts or relocation). If the council members are passing ordinances that violate the federal or state constitution, that's a matter for the courts. I don't like Charlotte's law, I don't think it was necessary, and I think it's a violation of the right of free association. But HB2 wasn't the way to fix it and that was never the intent. It was for one political group to try to control the behavior of their ideological adversaries.

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  1. I’m reporting Shackleford and Reason to Zuckerberg.

  2. Larger governments telling local government what kinds of laws they can pass is bad, and I say that regardless of whether I support whatever law.

    Ah, a Kim Davis supporter! You got a friend on staff, Eddie!

    1. Only, Shackford left himself an out. One that doesn’t seem to be particularly well-reasoned:

      it needs to be tackled under a constitution or charter and then pushed to a court to rule upon.

      So, courts issuing broad rulings like making gay marriage the law of the land nationwide are OK to Shackford regardless of what the icky Kim Davis’s of the world want (note I have no issue with gay marriage, whatever warts the Kennedy opinion had). But heaven forbid a state legislature act to protect a constitutional right.

      I really doubt Shackford or Reason would adopt this local is better position on something like, say, civil asset forfeiture.

      1. I have no issue with gay marriage either (seriously, I’m all in for government recognizing it, but I don’t pretend it isn’t used as a club to beat icky people with), but in her case, it was the court overriding the will of the people as represented by the Constitution of the state of Kentucky.

        I guess, government as in executive should work bottom up, and defer to lower layers. Government as in judiciary should work top down and defer to higher layers. Legislative – er…stay in your own layer and don’t aim up or down?

        1. The branches (executive, legislation and judiciary) are separate, co-equal branches; they are not layers.

          1. I meant layers within a branch, if you see it as a pyramid (city(county?)->state->federal), with judicial system being the one that follows that path most frequently through appeals process (or that’s my impression of US politics, at least).

          2. I believe he was referring to Municipal, State and Federal government as the layers, and how the branches in each should interact with the others in different layers. Supreme court should override circuit courts, circuit courts should override state supreme courts, state supreme courts should override district courts, etc., The president should defer to Governors, and Governors should defer to mayors, and legislatures should stay at their respective levels and not interfere with the others.

          3. Oh, ok, then yeah. But with one important caveat – both the US Fedgov and the several states (and territories) are sovereign entities. Counties, cities and townships are not sovereigns, no matter what the mayors of NYC may think.

            1. That’s the kind of civic lesson I come here for!

              Again, not sarcasm – the way US federal system works is very interesting, given my experience is mostly with Canada’s, which operates much more…I guess governmentally would be the term (it’s quite clear Province is in charge over its territory, but Feds can fuck them with withholding/giving money). Without separation of power between legislative and executive, too, and with Judicial being much more deferential to the legislature.

        2. I love that, even in a libertarian comments section, with all the free speech support that implies, we still have to addendum every comment on this subject with “NTTAWWT”.

          To invalidate someone’s argument about this discussion based on their support (or non-support) for gay marriage is the very definition of an ad-hominem. Why do we feel the need to cater to retards whose argument would be based on a logical fallacy to begin with?

          1. Obviously this means you disagree with my feelings on gay marriage. Fuck you!!!

            1. Merry Fuckmas, you filthy animal!

            2. +1 Prog-nosticating

              1. Very Cons-tructive.

          2. Well I did mention in another thread that I’m beginning to fear I started coming across as Canadian version of Rush Limbaugh, but without the millions. So better to disclaimer that shit right up.

            1. Who will be your Bo Snerdley?

              1. If there are millions in it, I’ll be Cookie the Clown for him.

          3. Or maybe he was just making a joke, Zunalter. Don’t be that guy.

            1. 🙂 Completely disregarding his reply wherein Pan validated my impressions, I re-read the initial post (and Brochettawards where a similar addendum happened) and I feel like my sarcasm meter was appropriately tuned.

              1. Perhaps in this instance, but others here use it ironically. Don’t you know…

              2. Hey, sarcasm travels poorly over the internet, so it’s better to put a preemptive passive-whiney apology from time to time to cover one’s ass.

                It’s the Canadian Way!

      2. “I really doubt Shackford or Reason would adopt this local is better position on something like, say, civil asset forfeiture.”

        Bingo! In fact, Reason went after the city of Albuquerque for implementing civil-asset forfeiture after a state statute banned it.

        What do you say, Shackford, are you willing to stand up for the Albuquerque’s power to defy the state?

        1. Whatever is the greatest boon to individual freedom, Eddie. Smaller and more localized governments are generally, though not always, easier to push in a direction of respect for individualism. Have you heard of libertarianism before?

          1. Look, Citizen X, have someone get you this book for Christmas, then look for the most offensive joke in there and apply it to your mother.

            That’s in lieu of me having to think up a clever insult on the spot.

            1. Eddie, your mom is so fat, her knees hurt all the time and she’s probably in danger of developing a serious health condition. We’re all very worried for her.

              1. Your mother votes for Democrats, and she’s a Democratic poll-watcher.

                1. Your mom is so ugly, she has a hard time getting dates, and she ends up spending most weekends alone.

                  1. Your mom’s ugly face makes regular mirrors break, so she has to use a reinforced adamantium mirror.

            2. Your mom is so ugly, it would be reasonable to apply the descriptor “homely” to her appearance, even when her hair and makeup is done.

              1. Your mother not only watches soap operas, she insists on not being interrupted while her “stories” are on.

            3. Your mom is so dumb, that even those of average intelligence look down on her, depending on the topic being discussed.

            4. Your mom is so fat, that her BMI exceeds the healthy average and she is forced to buy clothing at a larger size than she would prefer.

              1. Your mother bought the extended warranty.

                1. These are all so good, I may write a book and include them.

                  “I’d probably never sell out, I’d probably only sell 1.”

                  1. “I’d probably never sell out, I’d probably only sell 1.”

                    Print on Demand, Jimbo. Carrying inventory is old fashioned and out of date.

                    1. Didn’t get my 21 Pilots reference?

                    2. 21 Pilots, huh? Sorry, i didn’t realize you were in middle school.

                    3. Wow, that’s not very Christmas-y of you.

                    4. 21 Pilots is just a lyrically inferior knockoff of WHY?, who you should listen to instead.

                    5. His voice reminds me of TMBG. I’d like to hear his rendition of Birdhouse in Your Soul.

      3. As a libertatian shouldn’t you have a problem with gay marriege on the basis that it requires government permission, i.e. a license?

        1. Yes.

          Reasonable (?) reply: However, since marriage DOES require gov. permission under the current paradigm, it should at least be equitable.

          Sarc (?) reply: If I believed that, then I couldn’t high-five all my cosmo friends for sticking it to those douchy SoCons.

          1. So since you need permission now to issue currency, the meaning of “dollar” should be “equitable”? Since you need permission to keep a dog, the meaning of “dog” should be equitable (say by including cats)?

        2. I’m against marriage licensing. I’m not against courts having the ability to determine whether persons A & B are married to each other. I am against courts making such decisions on a basis wherein the meaning of “spouse”, “married”, etc. is different from what a party to the case would’ve most likely thought it meant.

      4. I expect the NC constitution gives the state legislature authority to override localities, so I doubt Shackford gets help there.

        Shackford seems to have the idea that the courts should be a super legislature and that government policy have no legitimacy unless it originates from the courts.

        1. North Carolina is a modified “Dillon’s Rule” state, wherein the authority for local governments to act on specific matters is generally via grants of authority from specific acts of the state legislature. (As opposed to ‘home rule’ where the grant of authority to local governments is broad.) So mostly the supposition in NC is that the local governments can only act in local matters where the state has clearly granted specific authority; but on the other hand, I said “modified” and that’s because NC court ruling have not always been clear on the issue.

          As you might guess, there has been a long history of disputes between local & state government over the extent of authority, and some decades the dividing line moves one way, and other decades the other way.

    2. Well, it’s okay if the larger government is the Federal Government, and the smalle government is a state government that is too unenlightened to promote marriage equality.

    3. “As for me, I’ve reached the point where I just want people to stop trying to find ways to punish each other. I do want gay couples to be able to get their marriage licenses in Rowan County and not have to go elsewhere. But I don’t want Kim Davis thrown in jail. I generally don’t want anybody thrown in jail unless they’re a physical threat to people’s safety or property. I understand why this decision happened and the legal principles behind it, but as somebody who celebrated when Gavin Newsom defied California law years ago and married off same-sex couples and who just recently wrote positively about a police chief refusing to arrest heroin users if they were willing to go to rehab instead, I find these kinds of punitive responses to nonviolent defiance deeply unsettling. That I disagree with the defiance and the principles that motivate it doesn’t change my concern.”

      From back when it was happening.

      1. Check out Squackflurd thinking what he writes matters. HA! Do you Reason comment, bro?

        1. Is that an excerpt from one of those “article” things i’ve heard about? Is this some sort of trick? No dice, Shacklelton!

        2. Crusty – you need to do the WHOLE name!

          “Scat Squackflurd”

      2. No italics or block quote, Shackford? For shame, sir, for shame. You should be setting a better example for us commenters.

        1. This new-fangled Italianics and Black quote shit…it’s for the birds.
          Hey, it works for me, Tonio!11!!

          Get off my lawn, too!

        2. If you don’t try to format, you can’t accidentally turn the rest of the thread into italics, with no way to fix it.

          *shudder* that still gives me the creeps

  3. The entire fight could end up being moot eventually, as there’s a legal push in federal courts to rule that discrimination on the basis of a person’s status as transgender is already covered by federal bans on sex-based discrimination.

    WRONG. Special protection for groups must be codified down to a granular level, so that everyone in the land knows that this is a member of a specific protected class and is not to be aggrieved .

    1. Government issued lapel pins that indicate identity group?

      1. Or arm bands

        1. Tattoos are popular with all the kids these days. Maybe some kind of tattoo?

          1. A two-dimensional barcode. Anything that can’t be read only with a smartphone is clearly 20th century.

            1. QR code then.

            2. Perhaps a special part of town for them too, so they can hang out with others who are like them.

              1. No need to do anything there – self-segregation is all the rage these days.

                1. I can live only among the left handed? Where do I sign up?

      2. You’ll know when the relevant commission slaps you with a life-altering fine.

        1. Is that a fine that will alter my life or a fine for altering my life?

      3. Nifty arm bands and sewn on patches (like a yellow star?) should work out fine.

  4. Larger governments telling local government what kinds of laws they can pass is bad, and I say that regardless of whether I support whatever law. If there is a civil liberty that is being violated, it needs to be tackled under a constitution or charter and then pushed to a court to rule upon. Why on earth should politicians outside of Charlotte have veto power over the laws of that city?

    I don’t understand the supposed logic here. Courts overruling local governments = good, but a higher legislature acting within its powers is wrong? I mean, the founders gave us the commerce clause which, in its initial limited incarnation, allowed the feds to break down trade barriers imposed between states. And most libertarians I know are just fine with using said commerce clause to open up the sale of insurance across state lines. I have a hard time believing this is a principle you stick to consistently, Shackford.

    If freedom of association is a right libertarians recognize, and it usually is, then it makes little sense to me to argue it’s ok for local governments to infringe upon it because local is better in some way. I don’t know what makes the opinion of robed lawyers who frequently OK government actions that infringe upon rights regardless of Constitutionality. I question if most judges have ever actually referred to the Constitution itself when making a ruling at this stage in our history.

    1. Let’s also be clear. The state legislature could drop every aspect of the law that allows ‘discrimination’ based on gender in public facilities, effectively only leaving the aspects preventing forced association laws from being put in place at lower levels of government. The left’s opposition to the law would remain because this is a new wedge issue for them.

      1. Does (((pants))) mean Levi’s?

        1. (((Calvin Klein))) would be my (((Guess))).

            1. Well-played, lads.

  5. “unless they’ve gotten their birth certificates changed, which frankly is an unnecessary imposition of government regulation of gender expression”

    Is it really an unnecessary imposition of government regulation? Then why do I have to legally change my name. Why can’t I just declare by fiat who I am without any paperwork? This stuff borders on the bizarre. If nothing is real than everything is false.

    The insanity of post-modernism

    1. the entire thing is insane. And Shackford buys into it completely. the totalitarian implications of not only rejecting objective reality but using the force of law to insist that everyone else reject objective reality in favor of submitting to someone else’ will and subjective view of reality never dawns on him.

    2. Your name is a lot less real than your sex/gender. But your name is one of the primary things used to identify who you are. Sex isn’t so much (not that it isn’t at all).

      I think an argument could be made that the law should not consider sex or gender at all and that it should be irrelevant in pretty much any legal setting. Of course, there are matters where your sex is relevant. But they don’t require an official legal document that says what your sex is. Other characteristics like “is pregnant” or “has a uterus” which are easy to determine can be used.

      1. “Other characteristics like “is pregnant” or “has a uterus” which are easy to determine can be used”

        http://everydayfeminism.com/20…..-abortion/

        Apparently not, because now we must use ‘gender inclusive’ language when discussing abortion.

        The thing that left-libertarians don’t understand is that they think that giving in to the latest complaint by the Left will placate them. But it won’t. They’ll literally just create a new aggrieved group out of thin air. Feeding their nonsense reality is not a solution.

        1. The thing that left-libertarians don’t understand is that they think that giving in to the latest complaint by the Left will placate them. But it won’t. They’ll literally just create a new aggrieved group out of thin air. Feeding their nonsense reality is not a solution.

          I think the libertine libertarians think this way. The progressitarians are a part of the latest complaint from the left. It’s important to recognize that there are both enablers and agitators in the libertarian ranks.

        2. The thing that left-libertarians don’t understand is that they think that giving in to the latest complaint by the Left will placate them.

          I’m not sure what exactly a “left-libertarian” is. But I would like to point out the possibility that some libertarians might actually agree with the left on certain issues, but have very different ideas about the appropriate solutions. Making sex/gender less relevant legally isn’t giving in if it’s what you believe is the right way to do things.

          1. But I would like to point out the possibility that some libertarians might actually agree with the left on certain issues, but have very different ideas about the appropriate solutions.

            Yes, and there are some libertarians (myself included) who believe that cowtowing to the left on the issue itself pretty much renders the “appropriate solution” irrelevant.

            1. I just want people to say what they actually think, regardless of political strategy. If what you believe happens to coincide with some of what your political enemies believe, then so be it. A lot of people seem to think that if the progressive left wants something, then we must fight it because it’s something the progressive left wants. And that’s a terrible way to think about things.

          2. I’m not sure what exactly a “left-libertarian” is.

            There are people w that description. One type is the libertarians who don’t believe in property/ownership, i.e. non-propertarian libertarians. Many anarchists have been of this type.

        3. Apparently not, because now we must use ‘gender inclusive’ language when discussing abortion.

          Whatever identity you may wish to have, you still are pregnant and have a uterus if you are after getting an abortion. That’s my point.

    3. It is not unnecessary at all. Assuming sex-segregated bathrooms/locker rooms will remain a thing, which most people seem to want, you will need some way of officially verifying sex if you are going to have laws on the matter. Even having laws promoting transgender accommodation would need to have a verification mechanism if they were truly limited to accommodation and not a stealth means of abolishing sex-segregation. Otherwise non-trans persons could use accommodation laws to go wherever they pleased and there would be no way to prove they were lying (especially since there are people who claim their gender switches, sometimes hourly).

      1. Somehow sex segregated bathrooms have functioned just fine up until this point without checking people’s birth certificates. It’s really not necessary. We don’t know what sex someone is because of what it says on their birth certificate. We know by looking in the vat majority of cases.
        The cases where that doesn’t work are so few and far between that it is really unnecessary to have laws dealing with it specifically.

        1. I’m more concerned about you looking than about the F>M who still has to use the commode stall. Did no one teach you we don’t talk, we don’t look?

          1. Most F2Ms will remain sitters for life. Phalloplasty is rarely performed because it doesn’t yield good results.

        2. Exactly. Because this was a non-issue before the Left realized they could use it as a political bludgeon. Why did Charlotte have to pass a law for a non-issue and then impose it on private businesses?

          1. Why did Charlotte have to pass a law for a non-issue and then impose it on private businesses?Why did Charlotte have to pass a law for a non-issue and then impose it on private businesses?

            Because they were using it as a political bludgeon.

        3. Well it worked until the SJWs decided to codify into law that gender overules sex and therefore make the etiquette surrounding sex segregated facilities illegal.

          1. And those laws are stupid and unnecessary too.

            But I have yet to see any evidence that it is an actual problem requiring government action one way or the other.

      2. especially since there are people who claim their gender switches, sometimes hourly

        Yeah, those people are not doing any favors for anyone. I’ve never seen figures on the number of genderfluid and non-binary people, but I imagine they are on the order of 0.05% of the population. Back in the day the transfolks knew that it was in their best interest to soldier on and support general gay rights causes (sodomy laws, marriage) and wait for their turn. The transfolk haven’t done this with the genderfluid and non-binary folks.

        1. I’ve never seen figures on the number of genderfluid and non-binary people, but I imagine they are on the order of 0.05% of the population.

          You obviously don’t tumblr.

          1. I do, very much so, but those folks don’t penetrate (as it were) very far into the bearosphere.

            1. Yeah.. that’s what’s kinda cool about tumblr – I usually only see what *I’m* interested in.

              I do know that the tumblrsphere is exceedingly rife with sjw tumblrina non-binary genderfluid otherkin snowflakes – thankfully they don’t penetrate into my porn.

    4. Why can’t I just declare by fiat who I am without any paperwork?

      You should ask Richard Bachman.

    5. Then why do I have to legally change my name. Why can’t I just declare by fiat who I am without any paperwork?

      Because you are oppressed by the state.

      That was easy.

  6. With HB2 still in place, schools are forbidden from fully accommodating transgender students (unless they’ve gotten their birth certificates changed, which frankly is an unnecessary imposition of government regulation of gender expression)

    Why is that unnecessary? If you want to be treated as a single person, you need to get a divorce decree don’t you? And don’t tell me about how government marriage is bad. Sorry, that train left the station when extending government marriage to gay couples became the most important civil rights issue since slavery.

    If you want the government to treat you as whatever sex, then it is on you to make that change official in government records. If you are too lazy to do that, tough shit.

    Moreover, maybe making students and by extension their parents go through some legal process and thought before they make a decision as radical and life changing as deciding you are the other gender isn’t such a bad idea.

    Jesus fucking Christ is Shackford completely incapable of seeing any possible downside or abuse in this context?

    1. One of the larger issues I have here is that progressives tend not to care about any inconsistencies that arise when they start pushing some new part of their agenda. The government already discriminates based on sex and gender in all kinds of ways that aren’t going anywhere.

      1. If you don’t have to change your birth certificate to be considered the other sex, then there is nothing stopping any boy from going out for the girls sports teams. The end result of this is the end of any gender segregation. At some point feminists are going to figure that out and the result blue on blue fight is going to be hilarious.

        1. This doesn’t change your argument, but keep in mind that in order to change your birth certificate in North Carolina, you have to go through the full genital surgery, which is quite expensive and risky. Hormones and appearance alone don’t cut it in North Carolina, although they do in other states. Many trans women do not choose to get a vaginoplasty due to the associated costs and risks, and even more trans men do not choose to get a phalloplasty because it’s largely seen as ineffective.

          1. OK, then, you’re saying that the state should *not* allow you to change your legal sex except if you were genuinely born with two sets of genitalia?

            1. I’m just saying there aren’t easy answers here. I don’t think requiring a sex-change is unreasonable. On the surface, it makes sense, but it doesn’t confront the reality that most trans people elect not to get a full sex-change, even if they “pass” for their preferred gender in every other aspect. It has become common to post pictures of trans men with rippling abs, huge biceps, and full bears, but the number of female-to-male transgenders who have had phalloplasties is extremely small, so those same trans men likely aren’t packing and haven’t had their birth certificates changed. This might change over time, though.

              1. That should have said “full beards,” not “full bears,” which would take this discussion into another direction entirely.

                1. full bears?

                  *paging jessie, jessie please pick up the red courtesy phone*

                  1. Aaaaand I’ll work on my spelling while you answer.

                  2. Jesse, Jesse, Jesse. What am I, chopped liver?

            2. One could well argue that the state was obligated to create a special category for those people born with both male and female genitalia. After all, god intended for them to be that way; why should the state impose a binary sex classification upon them.

              two sets of genitalia

              There’s a guy on Tumblr with two penises. Not sure if shopped, but it’s believable. They are both fully developed and functional, apparently identical from the photos.

                1. +6 foot 20, weighs a fucking ton

          2. This doesn’t change your argument, but keep in mind that in order to change your birth certificate in North Carolina, you have to go through the full genital surgery, which is quite expensive and risky.

            Not to disagree with you exactly but that’s a plain-letter reading of the law that can and probably does differ wildly from applied reality. That is to say, I strongly suspect that the uninfringable right to own a penis is more fully realized in NC than the literally-written uninfringable right to own a gun.

            I strongly doubt licensed penis transferers are regularly audited for complete documentation regarding penises transferred, held, or destroyed. Claims from outside the jurisdiction I strongly suspect are handled in a ‘shall-issue’ fashion.

        2. If you don’t have to change your birth certificate to be considered the other sex, then there is nothing stopping any boy from going out for the girls sports teams.

          Remember when the Federally Mandated birth certificate law passed? Personally, I’ve also felt that the sidelines and waiting for the receiver to catch the ball have been unnecessary impositions of government regulation as well.

    2. This probably doesn’t change your argument, but Shackford neglected to include the fact that a person has to have a full sex-change operation in order to get his or her birth certificate changed in North Carolina. It’s unreasonable to expect a high school student to do that.

      Of course, it’s also unreasonable to ask a preoperative transgender girl to shower with biological girls. My brother is a high school principal. He has had a handful of transgender women as students over the years. He has always made sure they were accommodated, never forcing them to use male facilities (where they could easily be subjected to bullying or violence), but also not allowing them into female facilities. Most schools have enough private or faculty restrooms, and they’re capable of handling this issue on their own without government intrusion.

      1. This probably doesn’t change your argument, but Shackford neglected to include the fact that a person has to have a full sex-change operation in order to get his or her birth certificate changed in North Carolina.

        I don’t agree with the full North Carolina law as I view some aspects intrusive and petty, though I don’t have any great solutions to every transgender issue, either. Ideally, government would stay out of it as much as possible rather than mucking things up further. I object most strongly to the way the entire argument is framed in much of the media from their lying about what the bill does to ignoring Charlotte’s law.

      2. Wasn’t the dude at the heart of the trans case going to the supreme court offered that very compromise (he’d be allowed to use a teacher/private restoom)?

        1. I believe so. I believe most trans students are willing to take that deal since, like every other teenager, they simply want to survive high school. Not everyone wants to put their teenage years on hold in order to become the face of a Supreme Court battle.

        2. Yes. Which is ridiculous, as that’s a perfectly valid method of accommodation that maximizes respect for all parties involved.

          1. Maximizes respect in a ‘least invasive manner’.

          2. maximizes respect for all parties involved

            The trans folks don’t see it that way. “Bathroom for trans freaks only” doesn’t exactly scream respect, you know. “Hey, look everyone, Gadfly is one of those freaks who has to use the special bathroom.” That type of respect, Gadfly?

            1. They might not see it that way, but that’s why I didn’t say “maximizes respect for the transgendered” but “maximizes respect for all parties involved”. The intent behind such an accommodation is to not disrespect a transgendered person by treating them like the sex they don’t identify with, but at the same time not to disrespect everyone else by forcing them to participate in a charade. The whole reason behind the demand to let transgendered persons use the bathroom of the opposite sex is that they do not feel comfortable being classified with persons of their same sex, but if you classify them with the opposite sex you trample the comfort of people with the opposite perspective. If all people’s opinions about their own identities are to be treated equal, then there is no way to square this circle and make everyone happy.

              1. disrespect everyone else by forcing them to participate in a charade

                That’s funny. I’m part of that “everyone else” and don’t remember delegating you to speak for me. Don’t presume to do that. But thanks for discrediting yourself.

        3. The student refused the compromise because it was offensive that they were not fully accepted as a boy.

          1. That’s where expectations really get unrealistic. I’m pretty sympathetic to trans people and am personally willing to accommodate them in reasonable ways. But the fact is that they aren’t and never will be fully and completely the sex they feel like they should be. It sucks for them, but that’s the reality. And because of that, you can’t really expect everyone to act as if they are the sex they want to be. For most people, sexual orientation is pretty strong and immutable. And many will be uncomfortable with the idea of sex with a transsexual. And I don’t think that is something that will change any time soon.

            1. ^This. You don’t have to like it.

    3. The one benefit of not needing to prove or officially register a change in gender would be that it would open up a lot of scholarship and business opportunities to people who it was otherwise closed to. If a man can become a woman simply by claiming to be one, then the favoritism for woman-owned businesses in government contracting will probably have to be abolished as it will become meaningless.

      1. This is more or less the crux of the issue. Since the Government itself has set up entire marketplaces that entirely discriminate based on race and gender the fact that some people are now going around those discriminations throws a giant wrench into the entire movement. This is why you see feminists and other fringe groups that have been pushing for special treatment under the law for decades freaking out about the issue.

        The Trans issue is the beginning of the end of progressivism and identity politics in general. Once you abandon any hint of objectivism and opt for subjectivism, you can no longer peddle in divisive politics based on those categories. If you continue to do so, even the most casual observer will question the glaring inconsistencies.

        Who suffers from that? Well, everyone, but especially the left.

        1. Finally, someone gets this. Enjoying seeing socons tie themselves in knots over this. They’d rather shoot themselves in the foot than accommodate a very small number of icky trans people.

          1. Social conservatives are generally having a hissy fit because the Progressives have stuck them with a hot iron knowing full well what the response would be. In fact, they were counting on it. They put the ‘stupid’ in the ‘Party of Stupid’ without a doubt.

            The fact of the matter is that trannies have been using whatever bathroom they want since forever, and only the Progressives deciding to make it a legal matter made anyone even consider the non-issue at all. I myself have used the women’s restroom in dire circumstances, and surprisingly I was not called out on it since it’s a general truism that when you gotta go, you gotta go.

            So in other words, who is the more foolish; the fool or the fool who follows it?

            1. I’m not sure how much of that was deliberate and how much was the inevitable result of pursuing the politics of identity and victimhood.

              I myself have used the women’s restroom in dire circumstances

              You are a brave, brave man.

            2. The fact of the matter is that trannies have been using whatever bathroom they want since forever, and only the Progressives deciding to make it a legal matter made anyone even consider the non-issue at all.

              Yeah, and this is why I’ve been saying all along that it’s all a big non-issue. No one really cares (or notices in most cases) until it gets shoved down their throats. If anything, making a huge deal about this is only setting back any movement towards trans acceptance, particularly in more conservative states.

      2. This is true of “addiction” as well. If being an “addict” entitles you to being maintained as such, or is the only way to get reliable access to pain tx, you’ll be an “addict”. Then look at all the “addiction”!

  7. When will libertarians learn that completely fluid “gender expression” is not an expansion of freedom for individuals, but a bowing capitulation to the all powerful state to subjugate those of us who actually know what our gender is and that is is absolutely not a fluid thing.

    Just like taxes are backed by the power of the state, so to is mandated gender “freedom”.

    1. No. They won’t. That is because they are cultural leftists and can’t understand the connection between culture and freedom at all much less understand how cultural leftism is completely incompatible with freedom.

    2. When will libertarians learn that completely fluid “gender expression” is not an expansion of freedom for individuals, but a bowing capitulation to the all powerful state to subjugate those of us who actually know what our gender is and that is is absolutely not a fluid thing.

      I don’t think it’s either of those things. You are confusing the thing itself with what people do with the thing. The notion that “fluid gender expression” is a real thing isn’t a political thing at all, in and of itself. It just happens that it is being used as a political club.

      1. Yes, but reason staff position seems to at le add t be sympathetic with the side using it as a club.

        1. That may be. I was narrowly responding to BigW’s claim.

  8. 0.3% of the population.

    if everyone who “identifies” as something slightly outside conventional social categories has the ability to demand their own special-accommodation in law, then civil society is completely fucked.

    1. Yup. And it is not just that even. They can and will demand accommodation in the form of everyone else bending to their will and subjective view of reality. Objectively, I am a man. That is what my DNA and body are. Subjectively, I think I am a woman. What this movement seeks to do is to get society and government to force you to bow to my will and subjective reality over the objective truth. It is about as Orwellian as a cause could possibly be.

      But gays like it so of course Libertarians are on board.

      1. But gays like it

        citation needed.

        if you’ve followed these stories about tranny-bathroom rights, the people screaming loudest aren’t necessarily ‘gay’ people – they’re “Advocates” and “Allies” from the Gender Studies departments across the country who have a small army on Twitter.

        iow- i think you’re wrong putting the politicization of the issue on ‘gays’. Its a narrow strain of the identity-politics Left that has really carried the ball on this thing;

        sure, there is some overlap with what people call the LGBT “community” – but i don’t think such a thing actually exists in real life, beyond the imaginations of the media. There are clusters of actual communities lumped together in that term that in real life have little to do with one another.

        Anecdotal – but my 3-4 gay friends (all dudes) in NYC i’ve talked to about this shit shrug about it and say,

        “well, the marriage thing was important, but it seems like “they” are trying to spike the football and do an endzone dance and frankly i don’t really give a shit”

        *and when they say “they”, they don’t mean ‘other gay people’…. but rather the ‘facebook & twitter advocates’ who fight tooth and nail for these issues

        1. i think you’re wrong putting the politicization of the issue on ‘gays’

          John erroneously placing blame on the gay menace? No!

        2. citation needed.

          Yeah, the cis/trans axis is an entirely separate phenomenon from gay/straight. Other than being “not normal” there is not a huge overlap. In other words, the vast majority of gays are cissies and have no more understanding or “empathy” for this topic than you do.

          1. the vast majority of gays are cis

            good point.

            its sort of why i dislike the whole LGBT[insert random string of code] label. it tries to elide some pretty significant distinctions and pretends that there’s some unstated shared-interests that they all theoretically agree about.

            Its the same old “collectivist thinking” problem, which is something we normally all recognize as the source of most of society’s worst ideas.

            1. I always figured it’s kinda “strength in numbers” thing, like when unions that work in unrelated fields merge, even though their interests don’t always overlap. And it’s not like they didn’t have shared interest in, say, 70s (e.g. “stop throwing us in prison when you feel like it”).

          2. vast majority of gays are cissies

            Ha. Cute.

            But it’s easy to get ostracized by movement homos if you aren’t in lockstep with the alphabet soup agenda. The middle of the road is the place you get hit from both sides, after all.

        3. “well, the marriage thing was important, but it seems like “they” are trying to spike the football and do an endzone dance and frankly i don’t really give a shit”

          So, if one guy dances in the end zone they *only* penalize *him* for excessive celebration and/or delay of game, right? Some of us are/were on the fence regarding the explicit validity of any/all marriage (as that was how the idea of Gay Marriage was originally advocated) and contested the play from the line of scrimmage (e.g. too many men on the field!). The end zone dance is just over-the-top celebration of ill-gotten gains.

          1. I never said it was a good metaphor. i was just trying to characterize the degree of “meh”-ness from the gay people i’d talked to about Trans-bathroom-politics. Most seemed to think of it as a distraction and not a hill they’re ready to die on.

        4. there is some overlap with what people call the LGBT “community” – but i don’t think such a thing actually exists in real life, beyond the imaginations of the media.

          In fact for at least a while there was considerable antagonism between homosexuals & bisexuals in terms of a movement. The homos often denied the bis were a real phenomenon. The existence of persons who went both ways implied homosexuality was chosen.

    2. Hah! “Everyone” – you really crack me up sometimes, Gilmore.

      Only the ones chosen by the Right Thinking People, in correct order, in some sort of multi-year plan perhaps. Based on some kind of oppression stack, if you really need some “rule” or “guideline”.

    3. As I mentioned earlier today, as someone who sexually identifies as a meme, I require meme-friendly bathrooms as an accommodation.

      Anything less and America has failed.

      1. Sometimes i don’t know about you, HM.

    4. As progressives score victories in the culture war, they will have to dig deeper and deeper to find various minority identity groups to protect through special privileges enshrined in law. They are just running out of wedge issues that their supporters can use to signal their enlightenment otherwise.

      Not to compare pedophiles to gays and transgendered, but to just demonstrate how this works – we saw some questioning and defending of them as a group in the aftermath of Kennedy’s decree. Different corners of the progress blogosphere were, in my view, sending out feelers. I predict the day will come when the batshit social justice types start advocating that you have the right to fuck children, and I’m not sure the mainstream left can stop them.

      1. I think that’s a stretch, but than again who would have thought trangender rights were going to be an issue even three years ago.

        1. Someone hasn’t been reading Salon. The normalization of pedophilia is well underway.

          1. Bro a lot of people haven’t been reading Salon.

          2. Is it a good predictor of where next SJW line of attack is coming? If so, should we worry about all those “I were a libertarian but then I became smart” articles I see linked from time to time?

            1. My favorite one of those was the guy who decided that he was no longer a libertarian because libertarianism wouldn’t justify him forcing other people to comply with his Buddhist values, thereby revealing himself as an abject failure at both libertarianism AND Buddhism.

              1. The central tenet of Buddhism is not every man for himself.

                1. That’s not the central tenet of libertarianism, either. And the central tenet of neither is “do as i say or else.”

                2. Depends on whether you mean Theravada or Mahayana buddhists. Theravada is more concerned with individual enlightenment, where Mahayana is concerned with universal enlightenment.

                3. The central tenet of Buddhism is not every man for himself.

                  Ha! Get a load of *this* moron!

                  Next he’ll be telling us that the London Underground is not a political movement!

                4. So, that London Underground thing…

            2. Reading Salon is essential. The first time I heard about Barack Obama was either in 2002 or early 2003, a year and half before most people heard about him. Perhaps I didn’t memorize his name right away but I remember reading an article in Salon about a young black politician in Chicago who enthralled all the progs.

              1. He had worshipful articles in the Chicago Sun Times before that….I saw this disaster approaching from waaaay far back.

        2. but than again who would have thought trangender rights were going to be an issue even three years ago

          Srsly, IH, srsly? Three years ago? No, the handwriting was on the wall for this as far back as the seventies. You just weren’t paying attention.

  9. Larger governments telling local government what kinds of laws they can pass is bad…

    That was clumsy, or poorly thought-out. Libertarians are just fine, and rightly so, with the feds telling the states and locals that they can’t piss on the 1A, 2A, etc. But the issue here is whether a local government in NC can pass a law which the state legislature doesn’t like. Sounds like the NC legislature never really considered that local governments might pass anti-discrimination laws and failed to enumerate which powers were reserved for the states, and which powers were at the discretion of the counties. Oops. Now they are in the embarrassing position of trying to backfill on this one issue.

    1. A city is not a sovereignty in the same way a state is. The relationship between city governments and state ones is a simple question of state law. There is no larger issues involving freedom involved in the question of whether the state or a city should determine an issue. Beyond that, the state, being the higher sovereignty gets the final say on that.

      The question here is whether the government should get into the business of forcing everyone to buy into transgenderism. The issue is not whether Charlotte or the state should decide that for North Carolina. That is a question of North Carolina state law, which can be changed by the legislature anyway.

      1. That’s been my understanding. That states can generally tell municipalities what kinds of laws they can pass.

        1. Cities and counties are creatures of their states. The federal government is the creature of the states. Shackford seems to have a misunderstanding of American Civics at a basic level.

          1. Couldn’t Del. have been said to be a creature of its counties?

    2. Yeah, I’m a bit disappointed with Shackelfords line of reasoning here. It reminds me of amsoc suggesting that local communities should be able to vote to ban firearms.

      1. We expect higher of Shackford.

  10. Charlotte’s City Council did indeed rescind its law, but apparently not cleanly,

    Translation: The Marxians in the Council cheated.

    Republican legislators were left with the impression that they were going to look for a way to sneak it back into play.

    Translation: The Marxians’ chicanery is just too well-known.

    Charlotte officials say this wasn’t the case.

    Translation: The Marxians’ answer is a perfunctory “Moi?”

    The city’s site insists the law has been completely rescinded.

    Translation: They keep lying about it.

    1. Yeah, and with an incoming Democratic Governor, HB2 could never be passed again. Being from Charlotte, I’m 99% certain that the City Council was just going to rescind it until HB2 went away, then they’d bring it back again…in a “slightly” different form, so as to not be dishonest.

  11. […] it should be up to the citizens of Charlotte to decide what sort of additions to discrimination laws should function in their city.

    … provided the citizens of Charlotte vote the right way, of course.

    That is how this always works.

  12. With HB2 still in place, schools are forbidden from fully accommodating transgender students (unless they’ve gotten their birth certificates changed, which frankly is an unnecessary imposition of government regulation of gender expression).

    Giving the federal government more power will fix this.

  13. This is a wedge issue in a teacup.

    1. General Murray: [on the Arab Revolt NC BATHROOMZ CRISIS] It’s a storm in a tea cup, Mr. Dryden – a sideshow. If you want my own opinion, this whole theater of operations is a sideshow! The real war’s not being fought against the Turks Gender Specific Bathrooms, but the Germans Title IX. And not here, but on the Western front in Washington, in the trenches! Your Bedouin Trans Army – or whatever it calls itself – would be a sideshow OF a sideshow!
      Mr. Dryden: Big things have small beginnings, sir.

  14. I’m here in NC and something discussed on the political talk folks here is that, if the state repealed HB2, other cities were going to follow Charlotte’s lead and pass their own anti-discrimination laws similar to Charlotte. So, basically, Asheville and WS were going to step back into the breach and rely on Gov. Cooper providing top cover and a state GOP tired of getting beaten about the head and shoulders. It wasn’t just Charlotte making noise about repassing their law once the state legislature rescinded HB2, but every other progressive enclave in the state going to the mattresses.

    1. They don’t even want a “cooling off period” saying these laws can’t be passed for a few more months – no, they want to be able to pass these laws *right away.*

      1. You’re totes cool with waiting a few months or years for fetal protection legislation, right, Eddie? Lulz.

        1. Once again, WTF are you talking about?

          This analogy isn’t even wrong.

          1. Once more: The RINOS want to empower the municipalities to arbitrarily burden and regulate private businesses, but under the RINO bill, there would be a delay before the municipalities could use that power.

            The Dems say no, that sellout is insufficient, the RINOS have to grovel even more.

            Thank goodness, at least for now, there is no cooling off period and the municipalities are powerless to pass these laws for the indefinite future.

            1. (OMG Eddie but you want burdens and regulations on poor innocent abortion businesses!)

  15. My hottake is that this is a complicated issue that the gov. has no business being a part of.

    1. Getting rid of government schools would go a long way towards solving this problem. Other than school, most people spend relatively small portions of their lives in government facilities.

    2. The government of NC only thought its business was setting policy for government entities. Charlotte wanted to impose ut will on everything in its jurisdiction.

  16. “Larger governments telling local government what kinds of laws they can pass is bad, and I say that regardless of whether I support whatever law.”

    So, what about the local laws they used to have requiring that public *and private* facilities be segregated by race? (let’s say we’re in the separate-but-equal era, before the victims could run to the courts for redress)

    What about a local law pledging the credit of a city for a municipal bond without approval of the voters?

    What about a local law requiring that first-offender heroin dealers be sentenced to life in prison, even if the state law provides a milder punishment?

    What about a law that nobody can operate a taxi service in the city except a company run by the mayor’s brother?

    1. You want more?

      What about a city law shielding the city from liability for any damage caused by damaged roads and sidewalks?

      What about a ban on large sodas?

    2. Something something local council blocks Islamic Cultural Centre on zoning grounds?

  17. Is Shackford the new Bill Kauffman? Kauffman used to be a Reason staffer. He’s *way* into localism.

  18. Hmm, I’m not for having the government dictate where high-schoolers go to the bathroom. Obviously, I’ve been cooped by the cultural Left as my best bathroom buddy, John, says above.

    1. haha good one.

    2. Hmm, I’m not for having the government dictate where high-schoolers go to the bathroom

      Yeah, but society apparently has been for dictating who goes where since Victorian times…which just so happened to correspond with advances in plumbing that allowed for mass pooping and peeing for the first time since the Roman era…when they also preferred segregation of the genders (but wasn’t always required).

      This argument has little to do with gender identification. The solution is to just have unisex bathrooms. But they sure as shit better still have urinals in these unisex bathrooms…I hate standing in line.

      1. I hope you have a well-funded legal defense plan for that time you whip it out when a little girl is in one of the stalls behind you.

      2. I am sure women will love th he idea that sex segregated restrooms, locker rooms and sports clubs are now verboten.

        1. I’ve been eyeballing the Curves up the road for a while now….

          1. Newly-thin women who still probably have really low self esteem? Good call.

  19. “The entire fight could end up being moot eventually, as there’s a legal push in federal courts to rule that discrimination on the basis of a person’s status as transgender is already covered by federal bans on sex-based discrimination.” Interesting since the entire TG argument is a claim that sex does not equal gender but it’s not like logic applies much in the LGBTQIA-ETC activist community.

    Put your ear to the ground and you’ll hear LBJ approvingly opine that “those f**s and tr****s will be voting Democratic for the next 200 years.

  20. The state legislature needs to quit calling special sessions for things that are not emergencies. As much as I’d like to see the law repealed, it’s not so urgent that it couldn’t wait a couple more weeks. The bathroom provision is unenforceable anyway. I work in a government office with 1 male and 9 female employees. There’s a women’s restroom with two stalls and a men’s restroom with one urinal and one stall. If 3 females all need to use the bathroom at the same time, one goes in the men’s restroom (making sure there’s someone watching the door in case a male client comes along). And even if someone wanted to report the law-breaking female, there’s no mention of enforcement in the legislation and no entity identified to receive such reports.

  21. RE: N.C. Trans Bathroom Law Survives as Fingers Get Pointed Everywhere
    Both sides claim dishonesty from their foes.

    I have a better idea.
    Do not put any gender signs on the bathrooms, and let the people guess which bathrooms they can use.
    Family fun for all!

    1. Actually, you are on to something. This will inevitably lead to more single occupancy restrooms.

  22. schools are forbidden from fully accommodating transgender students (unless they’ve gotten their birth certificates changed, which frankly is an unnecessary imposition of government regulation of gender expression).

    I’m guessing this statement alone could get a print edition article-length treatment all by itself.

    1. Which, it seems the schools are not forbidden from any accommidation, just ones that require kids of one sex from sharing a sex segregated facility with someone of the opposite sex.

      1. This issue is so confusing, I don’t know what accommodation looks like. I presume that not accommodating them means everyone goes into their sex-assigned bathrooms. But even then, what did that lack of accommodation look like before any laws were passed? Who was getting kicked out of what bathroom? What metrics were used? If accommodation laws are passed, what will they look like? How will they be applied? Are only transgender students allowed to use the ‘bathroom of choice’ or does it apply to any student? If only transgender students are given the accommodation, what are the metrics? Do we use the 32 categories of gender that the State of New York officially recognizes as a template? Does NC create their own? Or does a student merely need to declare? Can they switch the next day– if they’re… what’s it called “gender fluid”?

  23. In Trump’s America, trans will be allowed to use any restroom but half of the signs will be secretly switched and the rooms identical in every other way so they won’t even know if they are supposed to feel special or oppressed while peeing. Just a taste of the horrors we can expect in the new regime.

  24. Why on earth should politicians outside of Charlotte have veto power over the laws of that city?

    Why should anyone across the street have such a say, either? Regardless of whether there’s a political boundary running along the street.

    Why should the police be allowed to police anyone else, for good or ill? Why should anyone be allowed to have any case decided in court, anywhere? Why should anyone be subject to the same law as anyone else?

  25. It’s still, though, the right of British citizens to decide whether they want to be part of the European Union.

    Why should they be allowed to vote on that together when they’re 200 mi. apart?

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