This is a commendable piece from Ron Fournier and worth your consideration. But I’m afraid it also highlights how much conventional wisdom and group think can infest all of us.
Obama thinks he’s right on the right side of history. I think he’s right on the right side of history. But I don’t think the president thought this through. Absolutist rigor can drive a politician to seek the right outcome the wrong way—to stoke animus rather than inspire social change.
Look, I have long maintained and argue regularly on my radio show now that if a transgender person walks into a bathroom and is actually transgender, no one is going to have a freaking clue. Go in the stall, use the bathroom, and leave. But having to have a parade down the street on the way to the bathroom to celebrate something that a lot of people don’t accept, at least yet, is a real thing and not just a mental health issue only hurts the cause.
Likewise, because there is not a standardized definition and point at which we can say this person should be able to go to the girls’ room and this one should not, we are faced with the same situation on transgenderism that we are faced with open carry gun laws. A group of a**holes decide to push the boundaries and carry their machine guns strapped to their backs into grocery stores making people uncomfortable because “it’s their right,” and a group of dudes with facial hair go pee on the seats in girls’ bathrooms because they’ve decided to identify as a girl that day. Don’t tell me it is a hypothetical. Both situations are happening.
There is something to be said for being modest in the exercise of rights that everyone could learn.
It also does not help matters when liberal newspaper editors pen editorials “telling girls to attempt “overcoming discomfort” at the sight of “male genitalia,” should transgender bathroom laws be enacted.” We have a bunch of liberals demanding their world view on everyone when a great many people recognize there are way deeper issues.
But Ron misses something that I have noticed almost everyone in the media has ignored. He writes
North Carolina Republicans just passed a law that requires people to use bathrooms corresponding to the gender of their birth certificates. It also limits civil-rights protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, preventing local governments from extending rights beyond what the state offers.
So it wasn’t enough for Governor Pat McCrory and his fellow Republicans to legislate bathroom choices. No, seeking to galvanize their conservative base, the GOP leadership took a gratuitous swipe at broader civil rights.
No where in his piece does the word “Charlotte” appear. In fact, the North Carolina state legislature would not have done what they did had leftwing activists, led no less by a convicted kid toucher, done what they did in Charlotte, NC. There, the local government passed an ordinance insisting upon transgender access to bathrooms and specifically refused to exempt churches and religious organizations.
Had Charlotte not overreached, the North Carolina legislature would never have done a thing. But the left decided to push and push and push and not only decided to push, but decided they would impose their will on everyone, including faithful adherents to scripture that teaches “God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” (Gen. 1:27)
There is the original overreach and now the Obama Administration has overreached, but concedes the argument that this is not a settled issue by exempting athletics from the new demands.
Look, we’ve got people treating this as real and not a mental health issue and we have parents parading their two year olds out on national television to claim that their two year old is transgender. Pushing and pushing and pushing is only going to cause backlash and resentment, not acceptance.
Along the way, let’s be clear where the fight started. It was not conservatives getting a wild hair up their butts to take on this issue. It was leftwing activists in Charlotte, NC demanding that churches, mosques, religious non-profits, and sectarian schools all comply with a worldview deeply incompatible with orthodox Christianity, Islam, and Judaism with no exception. You can think the North Carolina legislature overreached in their response, but understand their overreach had originates not of their own making.
We should not need the government, in either direction, to pass a single law to tell people where they can and cannot use the bathroom. It should be common sense and good manners that dictate it. But I guess we are short of both.