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20 May, 2021 11:09

Tennessee’s ‘anti-trans’ bathroom law furor: What if this isn’t about transgender rights at all?

Tennessee’s ‘anti-trans’ bathroom law furor: What if this isn’t about transgender rights at all?

Activists are denouncing as “dehumanizing” a newly-enacted Tennessee law that requires businesses to post a notice about allowing transgender people to use their bathrooms. Forget tolerance, nothing less than affirmation will do.

Governor Bill Lee signed into law House Bill 1182/Senate Bill 1224 on Monday. Under the law, which will go into effect in July, a public or private entity that operates a building or facility open to the general public – and has a “policy of allowing a member of either biological sex to use any public restroom within” – is required to post a notice to that effect. 

This facility maintains a policy of allowing the use of restrooms by either biological sex, regardless of the designation on the restroom,” is the verbiage mandated by the law.

The law was immediately dubbed “anti-trans” by major media outlets, from the publicly funded NPR to corporate cable channels. Some activists have even called it “segregation.” At first glance, it’s difficult to guess why. Wouldn’t trans individuals want to know which facilities welcome them to use the bathroom of their choosing?

Ah, but the legal verbiage includes that horrible phrase “biological sex,” which is simply anathema to the woke.

Denying transgender people the ability to access a bathroom consistent with their gender identity is degrading and dehumanizing – and can have real health and safety consequences,” howled Alphonso David of the Human Rights Campaign, in reaction to the Tennessee law.

Except nobody is denying anything to anyone! Does David mean to say that businesses will somehow be shamed or inconvenienced by the legal requirement to put up a sign – the same businesses that happily hang up the Pride flag or any number of other woke virtue signifiers? Seriously?

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The irony here is that the entire reason for the signage is that biological women using the bathrooms don’t want to deal with biological men for literally the reasons of “health and safety.” David is literally making the argument the other side has invoked to keep the bathrooms separated by sex – something that goes back centuries and across cultures.

Over the past several years in the West, however, there has been a veritable crusade – or jihad, we don’t discriminate – to replace the concept of biological sex with “gender,” a category previously reserved only for language. 

According to this, gender is all in one’s head, and if a person decides they are really of a different gender than the one “assigned” to them at birth, society has an obligation to “affirm” this – with some surgical assistance, should the person so desire. Question this and you’re a bigot. Refer to the person by their previous identity – “deadnaming” – and you’re committing a hate crime!

More recently, there has been a push to make “gender-affirming” surgeries and puberty blockers available to minors without parental consent. You can’t buy tobacco before 18 or alcohol before 21, but you can pick your gender at eight or 10 – at least according to US President Joe Biden. There are even knitted genitalia being marketed to “trans” toddlers.

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Object to any of this, and you’ll get “canceled” by the woke – not just the activists, but the political parties, media and corporate cartels aligned with them. Even the Tennessee law, innocuous as it is on its face, must be denounced and disavowed as “dehumanizing” and as “segregation” when it is clearly neither. All in the name of diversity, inclusion and equity, of course – the Trojan Horse of “tolerance” having served its purpose and now long abandoned. Indeed, one cannot “tolerate the intolerant” as the meme attributed to philosopher Karl Popper goes.

One gets the impression this isn’t really about trans individuals. Maybe it never has been. Perhaps the point is in getting people to publicly declare that A is not-A. Once they’ve done that, they can be made to do anything, after all.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.