Us Vs. Them And The Need To Pee


To say I am unimpressed with American Family Association’s brave call against Target’s restroom policy would be an understatement.

We welcome transgender team members and guests to use the restroom or fitting room facility that corresponds with their gender identity. …Everyone deserves to feel like they belong.

Just imagine where this will lead: People who identify as female will pee sitting down. My God – the insanity! The AFA certainly lost their collective minds about it. From their petition (which at this time has over 675K signers) –

This means a man can simply say he “feels like a woman today” and enter the women’s restroom…even if young girls or women are already in there.

Hmm. Interesting interpretation. “Corresponds with their gender identity” = “Feels like a woman today.” I don’t think that’s the way it works, but okay, let’s go with that…

Target’s policy is exactly how sexual predators get access to their victims. And with Target publicly boasting that men can enter women’s bathrooms, where do you think predators are going to go?

Well, that escalated quickly. 

Clearly, Target’s dangerous new policy poses a danger to wives and daughters.

As long as your 12-year-old son is safe. Oh, he isn’t in danger? But aren’t all those predators currently laying in wait in the men’s room? And since this proposed change in restroom policy automatically rescinds all sexual assault laws that occur on Target property, orders the partitions between stalls removed, and cuts the entire security department, doesn’t it give rapists and voyeurs a free pass to operate there?

Wut. I’m just following the same logic.

This fear-mongering reminds me very much of the infamous “Letter from 2012” written on the eve of Obama’s presidency by a pal of the AFA, Dr James Dobson. I didn’t hear of it at the time – not directly – but my dad recounted to me in bemused tones what his sister-in-law had said: “They’re going to take our shows away!” We wondered what shows they were taking, and more importantly, who “they” were.

(Spoiler alert: “They” were apparently Democrats.)(Spoiler alert 2: “The 700 Club” is alive and well, even after two terms.)

Same tactic in the War To Stay Relevant. If you can’t give people a hero to rally around, give them a common enemy to hate. No one likes sexual predators, so that was an easy choice. So easy that we can ignore the fact that a marginalized group (the transgendered) whose comfort and safety was the basis of this policy change, were labeled dangerous deviants because an actual criminal might try to abuse the system.

“…a danger to wives and daughters.”  So only females are at risk, and only those who belong to someone, namely a man-someone. Nice. Single women and orphans girls need not worry – the rapists aren’t after you. They only want the females that belong to a man, because this is really all about men and their property.

Truthfully, I am concerned about the safety of my daughters, by virtue of the fact they are girls. And it makes me angry that I need to be. But I also worry about my bonus kids, some of whom are now not living the gender they were born with. I am angry that they are daily forced to decide on their own safety vs. the comfort of others. Lest anyone thinks this is just a fake trend, a loved one who was born female, looks male, and identifies as simply a human being, has been dealing with this for over fifty years. If she tried to glam herself with make-up and jewelry, she would be mistaken for a cross-dresser. She looks like she should be using the men’s room, but she doesn’t have the “equipment,” besides the fact she is a very private person, and modest. But when she goes into the women’s room, she gets a sideways glance at least. She has carried a gun her entire adult life, because of the microaggressions she is bombarded with on a daily basis. She is the one who is at risk, yet she looks like who the AFA says is a threat. She is a thoughtful, caring, honest individual, but none of that matters because she looks as though she should have a penis and she doesn’t.

My problem with this backlash against compassion and also the “Bathroom Bill” of NC is that it further compartmentalizes people. If we were to extrapolate the possibilities, we could imagine everyone being forced to carry their original birth certificates (good luck there, adoptees) and present them to the Gender Confirmation Staff (woo-hoo! job creation!) at the entrances of every public restroom. Of course because of the possibility of identity theft that would not be enough, so everyone would also need to take their pants down and bend over, thus proving they have the correct genitalia. Or they could install those body scanners like at the airport.

A “solution” that has been offered is to have a “Men”, “Women”, and “Unisex” option. Only this has been in place for years already. Sometimes called a “Family Restroom.”Ever try to use one? When you have a little kid who really needs to go? It’s one private room – everyone wants it. What bothers me about this “answer” is that even if the Unisex restrooms were expanded, it would be for the comfort of people like the AFA, who just can’t handle the fact that maybe God made people in a wider variety than they imagined. So those who do not fit into the prescribed categories but do identify as one of them would be forced instead into this third option, this “other.” The signs on the door may as well say “Men”, “Women”, and “Freaks.”

Or we could really simplify, and have two doors: “Us” and “Them.” 

As for the transgendered people who truly are at risk for assault…You can hold it, right?

 Elle Cuardaigh is author of The Tangled Red Thread.

2 thoughts on “Us Vs. Them And The Need To Pee

  1. I was sitting here, thinking about predators. I’m still forming my words,but I can assure you none of the ones I ever met operated out of a restroom. They targeted kids they babysat or coached or were just friendly with in the neighborhood. They were always ordinary looking guys (and sometimes women). You’d never pick them out in a line-up. *Nice* people. Church elders, coaches, teachers. I’d be more worried about the *normal* looking people. Anyway – well said. Well said.

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