Slog Music

Music, Nightlife,
and Drinks

Monday, October 22, 2012

"This change would take away that liberty."

Posted by on Mon, Oct 22, 2012 at 12:23 PM

The proposed change? An LBGT civil rights ordinance. The liberty it would take away? It's a pretty fundamental one.

But here he stood last March at one of three televised forums the city called to gather opinions about a proposal that would add lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people to an anti-discrimination ordinance. Dan Ells was ready to reveal his heart on a topic he’d heard a lot about at church.

“As a husband and a father of two young girls,” said the 28-year-old associate pastor, “this aspect of the bathroom issue is a very real issue to me... that we all cherish as we do something private like using the restroom. This change would take away that liberty.”

For a moment the audience sat, confused. Amid all the calls for “gay rights!” and “religious freedom!” this speaker, like many others, was worried about a particular angle of the proposed ordinance: Potty paranoia. Fear of a cross-dressing man using a women’s bathroom. And this ballot proposal would make it legal.

This is what they're talking about in churches? Cross-dressing men using women's restrooms?

For fuck's sake: trans women are legally women and can legally use women's restrooms already. Cross-dressers—guys who pull on women's clothes for thrills—cross-dress at home. They do it for sexy-times and they do it privately as most cross-dressers are highly invested in being perceived to be straight. (And most of their fellow non-cross-dressing straight people are confused about cross-dressing, believing it to be a marker for homosexuality, when it is, in fact, the exact opposite.) And if the passage of LGBT civil rights ordinances resulted in cross-dressing straight guys crowding into women's toilets, opponents would be able to cite hundreds and hundreds of cases of this exact thing happening. Because laws banning discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and/or sexual identity have been on the books in twenty-one states, Washington D.C., and over 140 cities and counties for years and years—for decades, in some cases.

Where's your proof, Associate Pastor Ells? Put up or shut up. Where's your evidence that the passage of LGBT civil rights legislation results in cross-dressers crowding into public toilets?

He doesn't have it because it doesn't exist. Haters constantly make dire predictions that never come true. Bigots and nuts and rightwing fundamentalists predicted that half a million troops would quit the armed forces if DADT was repealed. DADT was repealed. Exactly two wound up quitting—both chaplains and, you know, not exactly crucial to military readiness. The people who predicted that the armed forces would implode if DADT was repealed are the same people who predict that the institution of marriage will collapse if bans on same-sex marriage are lifted. These people should have no credibility at this point in the debate about LGBT civil rights. None. They have been proven wrong again and again. And Dan Ells has already been proven wrong on the whole cross-dressers-in-toilets issue. The complete lack of cross-dressers in women's rest rooms in places that already have LGBT civil rights protections proves him wrong. His daughters' "cherished right" to wee in toilets without cross-dressers nearby will be unaffected by the passage of this law.

The only time there's actual violence in women's restrooms is when non-trans people attack trans men and women for using the appropriate restroom. Maybe what we need are special toilets for paranoid bigots and their children.


Comments (21) RSS

Oldest First Unregistered On Registered On Add a comment
Will in Seattle 1
I think they call those special bathrooms porta-potties.
Posted by Will in Seattle on October 22, 2012 at 12:15 PM · Report this
Fnarf 2
All anti-gay arguments in churches ultimately boil down to "if gay is made legal then there will be nothing to stop me from touching other men's willies except my own intense desire to do so".
Posted by Fnarf on October 22, 2012 at 12:18 PM · Report this
Urgutha Forka 3
Haters gonna hate
Posted by Urgutha Forka on October 22, 2012 at 12:23 PM · Report this
very bad homo 4
Don't women's rooms have private stalls?
When this is their last argument, we've pretty much won.
Posted by very bad homo on October 22, 2012 at 12:38 PM · Report this
I'd vote for an ordinance that banned bigots and their children from public bathrooms. To truly protect themselves, the only place they can go to the bathroom is at home. Unless one of their kids ends up gay anyway. Then there is NO SAFE PLACE!!
Posted by ThetaSigma on October 22, 2012 at 12:44 PM · Report this
Until we as a society become more inclusive, the fastest solution would be to add more individual restrooms. They would be handicap accessible, have a changing station, a toilet, lav and a urinal. And they would have a lockable door. This should be standard in all public facilities.
Posted by SeattleKim on October 22, 2012 at 12:54 PM · Report this
@4: Easy for you to say. This exact argument has been used to successfully block gender identity anti-discrimination laws.
Posted by digitalwitch on October 22, 2012 at 12:59 PM · Report this
Sargon Bighorn 9
I so look forward to one day seeing the inside of a women's bathroom. I will finally find out why ladies stand in such long lines. National Geographic should do a documentary about it.
Posted by Sargon Bighorn on October 22, 2012 at 1:13 PM · Report this
@9. It isn't all that big of a mystery. We don't have urinals, thus we don't have pee all over the floor.
Posted by SeattleKim on October 22, 2012 at 1:20 PM · Report this
Can I just start calling these people out publicly, for being the prissy little idiots they are? I'm just getting so tired of feeling like I have to coddle these bigoted, simpering ignoramuses.


As someone who's done his fair share of janitorial work, I can tell you, you're not missing a thing.

As for the lines: because women's restrooms have only stalls, and not a combination of stalls & urinals as do men's rooms, there are usually fewer "facilities" available per restroom, which, combined with the slightly longer time it takes to use them, tends to create more of a backup for women than it does for an equal number of men.
Posted by COMTE on October 22, 2012 at 1:21 PM · Report this
Why are bigots so concerned with genitalia?
Posted by The fag on October 22, 2012 at 1:30 PM · Report this
venomlash 13
@10: The cycle of piss:
1. Some dude pisses on the floor.
2. Next dude to use that facility stands further back to avoid stepping in the piss. Due to having to pee over a longer distance, he gets some more piss on the floor.
3. Repeat until savagely bludgeoned by the janitor who has to clean up after you jerks.
Posted by venomlash on October 22, 2012 at 1:33 PM · Report this
It's ignorant fucktard douchenozzles like this who are the reason my transgendered girlfriend prefers not to use public restrooms.
Posted by daphne24 on October 22, 2012 at 1:43 PM · Report this
@11's answer is why women's rooms always have lines. @13's answer is why women don't revolt enmass and use the men's room when we have long lines.
Posted by SeattleKim on October 22, 2012 at 1:43 PM · Report this
Also presumably men are not fussing with feminine hygiene materials in the men's room also. These things take incremental time...
Posted by GrammarQueen on October 22, 2012 at 3:37 PM · Report this
ScrawnyKayaker 17
Went to a restaurant in Dublin last year that had an essentially co-ed restroom. There was a men's and women's side, but it was one long room with a clear line of sight from end to end.

So, the Irish are brave enough to handle it, but Murkins, not so much?
Posted by ScrawnyKayaker on October 22, 2012 at 3:51 PM · Report this
@13: That happens in women's rooms too. Someone sprinkles on the seat, causing you to have to hover over the seat, increasing the likelihood of you sprinkling on the seat, etc...

And don't you hate the way the teatards et al. have ruined the word "liberty"? Any time I read it now my eyes automatically glaze over.
Posted by chi_type on October 22, 2012 at 8:12 PM · Report this
stirwise 19
@13: I got kicked out of Burger King once for using the men's room. That's why I don't use the "wrong" bathroom anymore. :/

@14: And that's why bigots like the shithead up top make me so fucking sad. I want your girlfriend to use whatever bathroom she wants without feeling persecuted. What's this about needing bathrooms our children can be comfortable in? I want trans children and adults to feel as comfortable as cis-gendered children in the bathroom. Fuuuuuuuuuuck, why is this so hard to understand?

@18: Good grief, are there really women who do this? I just wipe the seat off and get on with my life.

All that said, I used to clean the bathrooms every night in my former workplace and men and women are pretty much equal in disgusting shit that happens. While technically the men's room was worse than the ladies' where I worked, most of that was due to one customer who pretty much covered every surface with urine, then stole all of our cleaning supplies on a daily basis.
Posted by stirwise on October 22, 2012 at 9:27 PM · Report this
stirwise 20
Whoopsie doodle, I said @13 when I meant @15. So sorry.
Posted by stirwise on October 22, 2012 at 9:28 PM · Report this
thene 21
@14; a trans guy I knew was sexually assaulted in a men's bathroom, became suicidally depressed and then went missing about a year ago. Whenever I hear anyone making the argument in the post - that cisgendered people need protecting from trans people in restrooms - I want to punch someone.
Posted by thene on October 22, 2012 at 11:08 PM · Report this
OutInBumF 22
@19-As a teen aged janitor, what 18 said is absolutely true, BUT- I've had to clean women's restrooms where it appeared they'd done #2 (and diarrhea!) from a standing position. Picture that mess.
I decided after a year of that, that other than pee on the floor/seat, men were a tad tidier than women. It only takes one bad apple....sigh.
Posted by OutInBumF on October 23, 2012 at 8:20 PM · Report this

Add a comment

Commenting on this item is available only to registered commenters.

All contents © Index Newspapers, LLC
1535 11th Ave (Third Floor), Seattle, WA 98122
Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Takedown Policy