One Equal World

North Carolina’s “Bathroom Bill” Already Being Challenged in Court

Posted on: April 5, 2016


North Carolina recently passed a “bathroom bill,” one of several such bills being considered around the country that requires people to use the bathroom of locker room corresponding to the gender they were assigned at birth. Although proponents of such bills claim that they are to protect women from men who claim to be transgender so that they can prey on women, the bills are really written to discriminate against transgender people. There is nothing to support the moral panic logic these bills are founded on, and not even a week after the bill was signed by the governor of North Carolina (the same day it was introduced, no less), it has already been challenged in court.

Transgender activists have decried the bill because, by forcing them to make known the fact that they are transgender, they face the potential for violence. Transgender people face some of the highest suicide, murder, and sexual assault rates of any group in the world.

The bill was created specifically to stop one municipality from granting transgender people the right to use the bathrooms associated with their gender identity, and includes language that prevents any municipality in the state from enacting anti-discrimination laws based on gender identity or sexual orientation. So in North Carolina it is now illegal to protect people against discrimination.

The bill has a lot in common with one which has very slowly been working its way through the Georgia legislature, and which that state’s governor has implied he will reject. The idea that protecting the rights of LGBT people is somehow a violation of other people’s “religious freedom” is a recent development in the conservative war against human rights. Realizing that the tide has turned against them and they can no longer blatantly discriminate against LGBT people, conservatives have constructed the absurd farce that their religious rights are under attack by their being expected to treat other people as people.


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