Florida’s Bathroom Law

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Being from Maine, I got accustomed to being asked about the cold, lobsters, moose and Stephen King. Living in Florida, I have become accustomed to being asked about why my adopted state is so insane. Most recently, I was asked about the bathroom bill making its way through the House.

The bathroom bill, officially known as HB 583, proposes that it should be a second-degree misdemeanor to “knowingly and willfully” enter a public facility restricted to members “of the other biological sex.” The bill proposes a maximum penalty of 60 days in jail and a $500 fine.

Some opponents of the bill contend that it is aimed at discriminating against transgender people. Some part of Florida have laws permitting people to use public facilities based on the gender they identify with rather than their biological sex.

Obviously enough, proponents of the bill are not claiming that they are motivated by a dislike of transgender people. Rather, the main argument used to support the bill centers on the claim that it is necessary to protect women and girls. The idea seems to be that women and girls will be assaulted or raped by males who will gain access to locker rooms and bathrooms by claiming they have a right to enter such places because they are transgender.

Opponents of the bill have pointed out the obvious reply to this argument: there are already laws against assault and rape. There are also laws against lewd and lascivious behavior. As such, there does not seem to be a need for this proposed law if its purpose is to protect women and girls from such misdeeds. To use an analogy, there is no need to pass a law making it a crime for a man to commit murder while dressed as a woman—murder is already illegal.

It could be countered that the bill is still useful because it would add yet another offense that a perpetrator could be charged with. While this does have a certain appeal, the idea of creating laws just to stack offenses seems morally problematic—it seems that a better policy would be to craft laws that adequately handle the “base” offenses.

It could also be claimed that the bill is needed in order to provide an initial line of defense. After all, one might argue, it would be better that a male never got into the bathroom or locker room to commit his misdeeds and this bill will prevent this from occurring.

The obvious reply is that the bill would work in this manner if the facilities are guarded by people capable of turning such masquerading males away at the door. This guards would presumably need to have the authority to check the “plumbing” of anyone desiring entry to the facility. After all, it is not always easy to discern between a male and a female by mere outward appearance. Of course, if such guards are going to be posted, then they might as well be posted inside the facilities themselves, thus providing much better protection. As such, if the goal is to make such facilities safe, then a better bill would mandate guards for such facilities.

Opponents of the bill do consider the dangers of assault. However, they contend that it is transgender people who are most likely to be harmed if they are compelled to use facilities for their biological sex. It would certainly be ironic if a bill (allegedly) aimed at protect people turned out to lead to more harm.

A second line of argumentation focuses on the privacy rights of biological women. “Women have an expectation of privacy,” said Anthony Verdugo of Christian Family Coalition Florida. “My wife does not want to be in a public facility with a man, and that is her right. … No statute in Florida right now specifically prohibits a person of one sex from entering a facility intended for use by a person of another sex.”

This does have a certain appeal. When I was in high school, I and some other runners were changing after a late practice and someone had “neglected” to tell us that basketball cheerleaders from another school would be coming through the corridor directly off the locker room. Being a typical immature nerd, I was rather embarrassed by this exposure. I do recall that one of my more “outgoing” fellow runners offered up a “free show” before being subdued with a rattail to the groin. As such, I do get that women and girls would not want males in their bathrooms or locker rooms “inspecting their goods.” That said, there are some rather obvious replies to this concern.

The first reply is that it seems likely that transgender biological males that identify as female would not be any more interested in checking out the “goods” of biological females than would biological females. But, obviously, there is the concern that such biological males might be bi-sexual or interested only in females. This leads to the second reply.

The second reply is that the law obviously does not protect females from biological females that are bi-sexual or homosexual. After all, a lesbian can openly go into the women’s locker room or bathroom. As such, the privacy of women (if privacy is taken to include the right to not be seen while naked by people who might be sexually attracted to one) is always potentially threatened.

Though some might now be considering bills aimed at lesbians and bi-sexuals in order to protect the privacy of straight women, there is really no need of these bills—or HB 583. After all, there are already laws against harassment and other such bad behavior.

It might be countered that merely being seen by a biological male in such places is sufficient to count as a violation of privacy, even if the male is well-behaved and not sexually interested. There are, after all, laws (allegedly) designed to protect women from the prying eyes of men, such as some parts of Sharia law. However, it would seem odd to say that a woman should be protected by law merely from the eyes of a male when the male identifies as a woman and is not engaged in what would be reasonably regarded as bad behavior (like staring through the gaps in a stall to check out a woman).

Switching gears a bit, in an interesting coincidence I was thinking about this essay when I found that the men’s bathroom at the FSU track was locked, but the women’s bathroom was open. The people in ROTC were doing their track workout at the same time and the male cadets were using the women’s bathroom—since the alternative was public urination. If this bill passed, the cadets would have been subject to arrest, jail and a fine for their crime.

For athletes, this sort of bathroom switching is not at all unusual. While training or at competitions, people often find the facilities closed or overburdened, so it is common for people to use whatever facilities are available—almost always with no problems or issues. For example, the Women’s Distance Festival is a classic race in Tallahassee that is open to men and women, but has a very large female turnout. On that day, the men get a porta-pottie and the men’s room is used by the women—which would be illegal if this bill passed. I have also lost count of the times that female runners have used the men’s room because the line to the women’s facilities was way too long. No one cared, no one was assaulted and no one was arrested. But if this bill became law, that sort of thing would be a crime.

My considered view of this bill is that there is no need for it. The sort of bad behavior that it is aimed to counter is already illegal and it would criminalize behavior that is not actually harmful (like the male ROTC cadets using the only open bathroom at the track).

 

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58 Comments.

  1. In the case of a facility that has a ‘one holer’ for women, and another ‘one holer’ for men, rational people have been using the opposite sex bathroom when the one for their own sex is in use for generations. A lock ensures safety and privacy.

    An amendment to this law must be made that excepts single use bathrooms.

  2. s. wallerstein

    A lot of places have unisex bathrooms, with a lock on the door. If one needs to use them, one knocks before trying to enter. A good example known to everyone, airplanes. The bathroom in my local supermarket works that way too, as does the public bathroom in most government offices.

    Why then would it be different for a male to use the female bathroom (or vice versa) in the case of emergency or serious bladder urgency if one knocks first to make sure that no one of the so-called opposite gender is inside it?

    It seems strange that I could get 60 days in jail in the state of Florida for using the female bathroom (after knocking to make sure that it is not in use) and that on a long-distance bus ride in Florida I can use the bathroom legally after
    knocking to make sure that it is not in use.

  3. s.wallerstein,

    Florida is a strange state. Did I ever tell you about the Florida pet shop owner who beat his employees with a lizard?

    I certainly agree with you-people generally sort out how to handle bathrooms without such laws. Critics of the law tend to claim that the law is not about what the proponents claim it is about (protecting women and girls) but is aimed against transgender folks. Since there are already laws against all the dangers that the proponents present (assault, etc.) this seems true.

  4. ” Living in Florida, I have become accustomed to being asked about why my adopted state is so insane. ”

    The Mariel boat drop?

    I know many people think Florida is all cocaine, gay fashion designers and Don Johnson, and all the other good stuff, but it is in the south.

    Maine has a corpulent popeyed Tea Party loon for governor. Who coincidentally has homes both in Florida and Maine. As a general rule, crazy people vote for crazy people, on the basis of “finally, someone who speaks some sense” (the sense being unadulterated lunacy). It does not bode well.

    Something strange is happening in America (something strange is always happening in America). Rep David Moore of Montana recently garnered global ridicule with his bill to outlaw yoga pants. Moore later dismissed his comment on yoga pants as being a joke, but of course it was not a joke. The wording of his bill was worthy of a particularly uptight Iranian cleric. Under Moore’s wording, a gal could find herself facing five years in the state’s correctional facilities for wearing jeans and a T-shirt. That wouldn’t have been Moore’s intention. I believe he would have envisaged it as a means of improving public decency, by empowering local police to force young women to return home and change their clothing, if they should deem their dress to be beneath a standard they feel acceptable. Like it works in Iran.

    Given the full glare of publicity, Moore looks like an idiot. But in that conservative bubble, yoga pants are being viewed as one of the greatest present threats to western civilisation. It’s strange with the perceived greater social and legal tolerance for LGBT, you would expect we live in more progressive times. But garments that it would have been unremarkable to see Nancy Regan sporting in the 80s, have recently earned bans in many schools in states in the US; as being too provocative and revealing. The same people placing the bans in schools would likely think the government is just too big to enforce the ban for adults outside of education system – if only they had “small government” and more “states rights”.

    Recently I heard Jonah Goldberg, a relatively young and relatively sane sounding (for a conservative) conservative author, blame Madonna for poverty of many women today. His thesis goes something along the lines of Madonna’s 80s’ slattern chic, led many young girls into a lifestyle that led to their poverty. He didn’t state what the alternative would have been, but I’d guess, he assumes, that without the influence of the material girl, they would have dressed differently, thought differently, and emulated the women in fabric conditioner commercials, and have been secured from poverty in some perfect social institution.

  5. JMRC,

    I am still trying to figure out how that guy became governor-Maine is usually sensible about its politicians. Maybe I am to blame-my presence in Florida created some sort of link that allowed craziness to flow north.

    You raise an excellent point: craziness grows well in the bubble that is the political echo chamber. It seems to be the greenhouse for wacky ideas. This is why it is rather a good idea to have opposing viewpoints present at any discussion.

  6. Kevin Henderson

    What is to prevent a male predator from accosting young boys in a male locker room?(*) Answer: typically this never happens since parents or other patrons in the bathroom can come to the aid of the boy.

    This is a silly law, motivated by insecurity and lack of critical thinking skills.

    (*) Somewhat innocuously, it is easily possible for some men to find pleasure in discrete voyeurism in the men’s bathroom, and until mind reading is approved (accomplished) by the state, no law will prevent this.

  7. Kevin Henderson,

    You have no doubt scared some people who are even now trying to build that mind reading machine.

  8. William Rothschild

    It’s very sad that this has to be legislated. God made man and woman, period! If you want to live a deviant, evil life, that’s your choice, don’t foist it on others.

  9. I don’t want any men in my bathroom! NONE! I don’t care if they are wearing a dress or a pair of jeans. Keep them out. BTW, in case you don’t know, lots of heterosexual weirdoes like to dress up in women’s clothes. It’s not just gay weirdoes!!!! Men in general need to stay out of women’s bathrooms, period! Some even wear women’s underwear. I’m tired of catering to idiots and sex obsessed morons. Keep them out of the bathroom. I don’t want to see any males in there, or any of their cameras, or any holes in the wall where they can peek or put their ugliness.

  10. and stop acting like lesbians are the same as men. get a grip, you are leaning too far to the side and you are going to tip over w the mendacity of this article!

  11. Yep, Its true. Jews and gays are united in destroy America with their anti Christian values. The already have a city in Texas enforcing Transgender bathrooms. Nice. A guy can wait for a girl to come in and rape her. Sounds like a safe idea to me.

  12. Katz,

    While I appreciate an argument free rant as much as anyone, it would be nice if you could back up your position with some logical reasons.

  13. Douglas,

    Expression of opinions is fine, but there is no place here for things like anti-semitism.

  14. How about requiring restaurants to provide bath rooms for customers before being able to sell food and drink in all states? Food and drinkcause the need for bath rooms!

  15. Hey I have an idea……3 bathrooms
    Men
    Women
    Everybody Else
    Let the Everybody Else’s figure it out.

  16. Indigo’s idea works for me. As long as I have my privacy.
    If I see a man in my bathroom, he better start running.

  17. There’s a part of our population that’s falling backwards in time away from the tolerance that was growing in this country since WW2.

    Orwell and Huxley were right when they spoke of “doublespeak.” Uneducated prudish and puritanical people would like to restrict the freedom of others when they call for “religious freedom, and “bathroom” laws.

  18. Lee Peschth,

    Every restaurant I’ve even been in has had bathrooms.

  19. Katz,

    Are you saying that if you saw a transgender person in the bathroom who was not trying to harm you or even look at you, you would attack the person? If you knew a transgender was in a stall, peacefully urinating, would you kick down the door and attack? Or do you mean something else?

  20. If I saw any man in the woman’s bathroom, he would be chased out of there w my purse. I’m not kidding. The yelling would be well heard in the street.

  21. s. wallerstein

    Katz,

    How can you justify in ethical terms attacking a transgender person who is in the woman’s bathroom if they are, as Mike says, in a stall urinating without looking at anyone or trying to harm anyone, especially since we know that transgender people are often subject to harassment and physical violence if they use the men’s bathroom?

    That is, for a transgender person using the woman’s bathroom is a refuge of sorts. Are you against providing a refuge for victims of persecution, even more so in the case at utterly no cost to you or to anyone else?

  22. Disgusted Lesbian

    I resent these uptight females and their retarded male “defenders” assuming I have any interest whatsoever in them. Why is it they are obsessed with ogling lesbians who are only trying to use the facilities? Additionally, I don’t want anything with a dick in the women’s room, period. And as far as I’m concerned, Lesbian Women are MORE authentic and genuinely FEMALE then these compromised breeder sows. If you are so concerned with “queer-looking” women in the bathroom, do us a favor; stop cruising us.
    And guys, whatever you call yourself, if you really want to use the ladies loo, cut it off.
    See how simple?
    BTW- the BUTCHEST females I’ve ever seen usually have a nelly looking husband and a shitload of brats. Charming, no?

  23. s. wallerstein

    Disgusted lesbian,

    I doubt that anything I say will matter to you, but for the record, I find it sad that a group which has experienced as much discrimination and exclusion as lesbians have are incapable of empathizing with transgender people, who also suffer discrimination and exclusion.

    I’m sure that the Christian right and the Republicans are joyful to see oppressed groups like lesbians and transgender people tearing each other apart instead of uniting to face their common enemy, bigots like the Christian right and the Republicans.

    End of Good Friday sermon.

  24. “Disgusted Lesbian”,

    While the expression of diverse opinions and spirited argumentation are welcome here, incivility is not. Trolling is definitely not welcome.

  25. Why on earth does it fall to women to have to put up with men in dresses hanging around our bathrooms? If men are mean to them, then talk to the men. Don’t try to pawn them off on us. Don’t cry to me bc you can’t control the men. Men stay in the men’s bathroom. We won’t believe you are innocent bc none of you. Don’t try to snow us, either.

  26. If Fred wakes up tomorrow and thinks he’s Napolean, they’ll give him psychotropic drugs to bring his delusions back into line with reality.
    If Fred wakes up tomorrow and thinks he’s Josephine they’ll give him hormons and surgery to bring his”reality” into line with his delusions.

    The real insanity is the mental illness of the “transgendered”

    When you do something about chromosomes the concept may have a future.

  27. This is Police State legislation. Do Floridians want possibly armed guards similar to tsa agents manning all public restroom facilities? Guards that will pat them down for sexual identification, possible make one walk thru a metal detector and/or body scanner prior to their use of a latrine? Do they wish to increase costs to business by forcing upon them the additional cost of bathroom security? Are they creating jobs? How many public bathrooms in the state times hours of operation dollars will be added to the already overburdened taxpayer, to spy on YOU? Please, leave me pee in private.

  28. katz,

    “Why on earth does it fall to women to have to put up with men in dresses hanging around our bathrooms? ”

    Katz, darling, the whole transgender thing literally cuts both ways. Yes, there are dudes complaining about this whole thing, but they tend to be crusty old white males who’d like to ban yoga pants. Maybe that’s the bus you’re on.

    “BTW, in case you don’t know, lots of heterosexual weirdoes like to dress up in women’s clothes.”

    Yeah, Katz, and you know nature plays a cruel trick on many women who are neither lesbians nor transgender, making them look like men in dresses. Some of these women even have beards for Gods’ sake.

    Public bathrooms have always had their indignities; they are undignified simply by their nature. I’ve never felt particularly comfortable relieving myself surrounded by strangers, some of whom on occasions have been quite strange. From your shrill tone, you’d swear you were losing holy sanctuary. It’s a toilet, Katz, a toilet.

  29. rosemarie,

    “Do Floridians want possibly armed guards similar to tsa agents manning all public restroom facilities?”

    Don’t give them ideas.

    But the kind of thing you’re suggesting, has been in action for quite some time. Public restrooms have been for a long time used by some gay men as pick up places, and by male prostitutes as places of business. Undercover cops entrap Republican senators and right-wing pastors in men’s restrooms.

  30. Katz,

    As a runner, I’m familiar with the whole “mixed” bathroom thing. There are rarely ever problems, because people are usually acting like adults and focused mainly on the race. If people are well-behaved (not assaulting or gawking), there seems to be no compelling reason to worry about the “bathroom problem.” Assault, gawking and other bad behavior are already illegal-we don’t need a new law.

    I do agree that men should not attack or hurt transgender folk.

    Did you mean to say that no men are innocent? Well, actually most of us are-the vast majority of us do not assault or otherwise harm women.

  31. Bill Jones,

    If a person did think he was Josephine (that is, Napoleon’s wife) he would presumably also be in need of some medical treatment. But if Fred identifies as a woman, it is not clear that there is anything wrong with Fred. While sex is biological, gender identity is of the mind. It is rather like political or religious identity. We don’t think someone is crazy because he is a moderate or Jewish. We also don’t think someone is crazy if they decide they want to change their political affiliation or faith.

  32. Rosemarie,

    JMRC is right-you do not want to give us (people in Florida) ideas. I would not be surprised to see a bill calling for just that. Coincidentally, I was talking to a lawyer friend of mine at a race this morning. He said that when he deals with lawyers from companies outside of Florida, they routinely say “we cannot figure out why you have the laws you do.”

  33. s. wallerstein

    Transgender identity isn’t like political or religious identification. There seems to be some evidence, which I am not qualified to evaluate, that transgender identity is rooted in the brain.
    http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn20032-transsexual-differences-caught-on-brain-scan.html#.VSCKhOktFWE

    Second, transgender people generally see themselves of a gender different than their biological sex from a very early age, while political and religious identification can occur and change at any stage in life. Most people probably see me as Jewish, but as I get older, I feel less and less Jewish, to the point that I feel Jewish only because others see me as Jewish. If I lived somewhere where no one saw me as Jewish, I’d not feel Jewish at all (I believe).

    Transgender people, as far as I know, cannot change their gender identification.

    So it’s really nothing like me believing that I’m really Napoleon or in my case, Nietzsche, since I didn’t believe that I was Nietzsche while a small child and there is a possibility that as I grow older, I may discover that I’m really not Nietzsche, but Spinoza.

  34. How would any man have any idea what happens in a woman’s bathroom. I love how these men are so quick to insist on using our bathroom and declaring that men are mostly innocent.
    However, men are not innocent. They think of sex every 7 seconds. All are motivated by sex bf anything else. They are sex slaves to their libido. No man is trustworthy that would dare to defile the women’s restroom. I don’t care if he wears a wig or a pair of pants. His brain is what is the problem.

  35. Katz,

    “How would any man have any idea what happens in a woman’s bathroom.”

    You’re right. Since you’re making such an issue of it, I’d imagine it’s something quite special. The ladies link hands, and sing tra-la-la, as they dance a ring’o’rosie, the Queen of the Fairies appears, and sprinkles them all in fairy dust, recharging their femininity.

    That sounds nice, but unlikely to be true.

    It’s more plausible that in the woman’s bathroom, ladies squat over porcelain bowls while urinating, flatulating and defecating. And here they are at their most vulnerable. If men were to know the truth. That women contort themselves into a bestial forms and excrete odiferiously with an equally unpleasant sonic accompaniment, the whole edifice of femininity would shatter. And what would become of the world.

    Katz, I think the big secret is out. Believing otherwise might be delusional as a man with a comb over believing other people think he has hair.

    ” I love how these men are so quick to insist on using our bathroom and declaring that men are mostly innocent.”

    We’re not talking about men here, we’re talking about transgender women. There is a reason I strongly believe you’re making a fuss over nothing. I’ve worked with a transgender woman. She used the same facilities as all the other women for years without a hiccup or complaint. It’s not to say the other women in what was a busy office, would be okay with sharing with a transgender woman, it’s more they did not know she was transgender, or could tell.

    Transgender women have been using cis-gender women’s facilities for years. The only reason it’s becoming an issue now, is because some people want to make an issue out of it. Not because there was a problem in the first place.

    “However, men are not innocent. They think of sex every 7 seconds. All are motivated by sex bf anything else. They are sex slaves to their libido.”

    And where have you heard such things. If men really thought about sex every 7 seconds, they’d hardly be able to tie their shoelaces let alone leave the house. Where would the time for thinking about sport come from. And most men are quite happy and free to loose themselves from the chains of libidinal servitude, over the course of a televised major sporting event – and even for minor ones.

    “No man is trustworthy that would dare to defile the women’s restroom. I don’t care if he wears a wig or a pair of pants. His brain is what is the problem.”

    How would any woman know what happens in a man’s brain?

    See how I have taken your logic, and twisted it around so it now becomes a weapon to prod your assertions with.

  36. s. wallerstein

    Would that I thought of sex every 7 seconds instead of my aching back or my ill-fitting shoes or putting off deciding how to get out of this business deal that I stupidly agreed to participate in!

  37. Katz,

    Contributing to the discussion is great. Trolling, not so great.

  38. Just bc you do not agree with me does not mean I am trolling.
    And, this guy above, is just not getting it.

    I am not concerned about women. I am concerned about men coming into woman’s bathrooms. FYI, many things happen in a woman’s bathroom that no man needs to try to creep into.

    For one thing, some women breastfeed their babies. Other women change babies’ diapers. Other women put on makeup and check to see how they look. Others just come and go quickly, but some bring in small children to help them do their potty.

    Many child molesters may take this opportunity to dress up like women and pretend they are gender reassignment, and therefore have a RIGHT to go in there and peek, or worse.

    Many children are lost when they go into a bathroom unattended. That is bc a perpetrator took them.
    Child molesters will take advantage of this RIGHT.

    So, bf you make up silly stories and pretend it’s all right, think for a minute about the possibility of a worst case situation. This person claims a RIGHT to be there?

    Just for one thing alone, they should stay out, out of respect for women and children.

    BTW, many men use bathrooms to cruise. Even Senators tap their feet in a stall. Do you really think he was innocent?
    Maybe it’s just you don’t want him in your bathroom?

  39. Katz: don’t women’s bathrooms have stalls where the real “private” business is conducted?

    What would men gape at if they did enter a women’s room?

    On a different track, if you please:

    If sports arenas put in a third bathroom for transgendered fans it would be used by everyone, INCLUDING WOMEN as soon as the lines waiting to use the men’s and woman’s rooms built up –as they ususlly do at most stadiums and arenas.

  40. Katz,

    “Just bc you do not agree with me does not mean I am trolling.
    And, this guy above, is just not getting it.”

    Katz, I don’t believe you’re trolling. But, I do believe you’re hyperventilating.

    You’re reacting as if someone is about to open some kind of flood gates on you. But, here’s the thing……there is no coming flood, as the gates have been open all along. In fact there never were any gates.

    There never were any gates.

    The proposed bill in Florida is to erect a gate.

    Though I have no idea how they intend to enforce this law, as it would take a relatively thorough and intimate examination of a transgender woman who has undergone transformative surgery to determine the fact she is a transgender woman.

    Imagine Katz, you spend a penny in Florida, and some good citizen thinks you look a little too manly to be a woman. They call the police, the police arrive. Think where they’re going to have to shine their flashlights before they let you go. And they will……And they will shoot you dead if you resist; it’s Florida.

    There were no gates, and there were no problem.

    Why do you have a problem now?

    Is this really about bathrooms, or is it something else; your feelings about the existence of transgender women itself.

  41. no police officers are going to shoot me dead. for one thing, there is no doubt that I am a woman. For another, I do not confront police officers in a negative way, ever.
    I am upset bc it appears that men are trying to replace women. It’s not enough that they are suffering from the various things that men suffer from, but now men are thinking that they can replace women.

    that is a travesty.

  42. s. wallerstein

    Katz,

    Mike points out in the original post that there are already laws against rape as well as against lewd and lascivious behavior, which I imagine includes a male “exposing” himself.

    So what we are discussing is not if straight males, dressed as women or not, who enter otherwise occupied women’s bathrooms should be dealt with by the police (we all agree about that), but whether transgender people, who consider themselves as women and who are considered as women by many people, who often are indistinguishable from women, who behave like women and who, like women, often suffer sexual harassment and abuse from straight men should be allowed to use the woman’s bathroom.

  43. Dennis Sceviour

    Katz wrote, “Many children are lost when they go into a bathroom unattended.” This is true and someone has to speak out in the name of public protection. Katz is trying to make a point and is looking for help to express some of these views.

  44. Thank you Dennis.

    It appears that this article only has those who agree w it, reading it. A lot of us do not agree.
    In my experience, many transgender people are inappropriately trying to demand rights that they do not have, and have no right to have.

    Imagine, what if Bruce Jenner is standing next to you? Do you want him in there? We already know that he is at the very least bisexual, as he has children.

    So, perfect example. You are going to say to me that Bruce has a right to use the Ladies Room? I don’t want to see him there, and I don’t care how much surgery that he has.

    How are you going to know who is what when it is a free for all?

    Another violation of privacy rights, it is.

  45. Katz,

    If you are not trolling, then I apologize.

    Men also change their babies diapers in the bathroom and bring in small children. So that does not seem to be a special problem for women.

    I obviously don’t want people doing bad things in the bathroom. But, all the misdeeds you mention are already illegal. It also seems very unlikely that many men will suddenly start dressing up like women solely to take advantage of the law and who would not have committed misdeeds if it were not for the law. In short, the law is a solution looking for a problem. And these problems are already addressed by existing laws. To re-use my analogy, making a new law banning men from committing murder while wearing dresses would not reduce the murder rate.

    The cruising problem you mention seems to be men in a men’s room. This does not seem relevant to the law.

  46. Katz

    “I am upset bc it appears that men are trying to replace women. It’s not enough that they are suffering from the various things that men suffer from, but now men are thinking that they can replace women. ”

    I’m not really understanding you. “replace women” in what sense? You’d have to give me a clearer idea of what you mean.

    Was there a Wannsee style conference (held in a men’s restroom), where the Final Solution for women was conceived; “we vill replace zem wit zee trangenders”. No. Are there conspiracies against women in general; yes. And I believe the Florida bathroom law could in fact be part of one those conspiracies.

    “In my experience, many transgender people are inappropriately trying to demand rights that they do not have, and have no right to have.”

    And what rights are these you’re talking about? What rights do you believe transgender people should not have? And what makes you entitled to rights, or more entitled to rights than transgender people?

  47. They don’t have any more rights than anyone else.
    Not only that, who cares what they do.
    Just stay out of the woman’s bathroom, if you are not a woman.

  48. Katz,

    The transgender folks who identify as women would probably agree with you. Since they regard themselves as women.

  49. More people are exercising their right to choose or change their sex. Especially Millennials. A son becomrs a daughter. A granddaughter becomes a grandson.

    They’ve come up with new descriptions for themselves, like “gender-queer” or “gender nuetral.”

    Transgenderism is commoner than we think and young children have become uncomfortable in their male or female skins and want to flip.

  50. I think there is no problem.Anything is best Male/Female/Both.

  51. Bathroom Laws | Smallbathroomdesignideas.net - pingback on September 10, 2015 at 4:17 am
  52. I am very UNCOMFORTABLE about sending my 3 year old or my 1 year old into a bathroom alone with MEN. I have no idea whats going on in there. Pedophiles lurk in the shadows waiting on vulnerable kids. This should be factored in.

  53. Dilly, Why would you send a three year old and one year old into a public bathroom alone? I have never seen this in my entire life. Not only unsafe for many reasons (abduction by any gendered stranger, slip and falls, finger/hands caught in stall doors, drowning in the toilet, etc) but also sounds like a big mess awaiting to happen.

    Everyone, I’m interested in hearing others thoughts about how this issue applies to public locker rooms where people would be showering in group showers and changing, where small children may be. The group setting to me is different than a public bathroom with stalls. A male pretending to be trans may presumably go into a public women’s locker shower room and shower for the voyeuristic thrill both exposing himself and seeing others. And children may be in this area, eg, ywca, city pool, gym, etc. If I and my daughter were in women’s locker room, changing or showering, and a man (potentially pretending to be transgendered) came in and started showering, or sat next to us and started changing, would this be allowed in the law? I’m assuming so, since he could just pretend to be going about his business of showering and changing while looking at everyone and exposing himself for the thrill, as there is no way to truly prove gender identity, and prove he is doing it for pleasure. I can’t imagine this happening much, but just curious how you opine this potential issue should / could be / is accounted for?

    In a public bathroom with stalls it seems you could argue that someone exposing themselves outside of the enclosed stalls in the common area, or peeking into or over the stalls can already be prosecuted for invasion of privacy and indecent exposure (though I’m not really sure about that). So those are covered by existing laws I think, I’m sure local laws vary too of course. But the locker room and public showers seem distinctly different issue to me because nudity is presumed in a group shower and group changing places. And if a man has right to be changing and showering in shared spaces, there may be some men willing to pretend to be transgendered to sit there and dress and shower and either pretend not to be looking/enjoying revealing himself, possibly to children.

    Thanks!

  54. I’m not super political, and have many gay friends. I read an article and found this discussion while researching what’s what. That being said, I also have two daughters 13&15. The comment from Aquak is the one that inspires questions in my head. We go to theme/water parks often, living in central FL, and people are crazy, all people, and I don’t trust most of them.
    My gay and trans friends are some of the more thoughtful ones, and I’m not even closed to worried about them. It’s that high school boy who’s a little off in the head, or that perv that can’t go near a school, so instead walks into the ladies locker that worry me. Anyone else have thoughts for this open mind?
    And I maybe wrong, but wasn’t this bill brought about in response to the Fed govt telling the nation that all bathrooms have to be made available, etc..? If bathrooms were sorted out before without problem, then why the Fed mandate? Seems kinda like a two sided coin to me. But like I said, I’m not the most informed person, I’m just trying to learn so I can make informed decisions. Thanks

  55. “Staring through the gaps” – why in the world would you have gaps in a toilet stall? Americans are perverts, and need to follow British public toilet design.

  56. A matter of construction techniques, I suppose. The doors to restroom are rarely perfect fits and the stall wall do not usually go floor to ceiling.

  57. “Wow” – Are there a large number of male assaults in women’s bathrooms in Florida? What are the statistics compared with other States that require such draconian laws that would be out of step with the rest of the US and indeed most of the World?

    As a regular tourist from the UK I would cross FL off the the places I visit as I would not risk spoiling our vacation because one of us took a wrong door. Maybe I will cross FL off anyway due to the perceived increased risk of my wife being assaulted whilst using a bathroom. I will be warning my Canadian cousins who usually winter in FL and also their snowbird friends.

    If this results from there being a real problem – shouldn’t FL be instigating a remedial program?

    Has FL enough lady plumbers to fix things when things go wrong?

    What do mothers do with their young sons whilst they use their facilities – and conversely fathers with daughters?

    After reading the comments I conclude FL needs a three bathroom system “Prude Women” – “Unisex” and “Prude Men” – and maybe the “Prude” facilities should have key only access issued upon proof of gender!

    Katz – can you imagine it? Just queue there and flash you lady parts and the man at the desk will issue you with a key!

    OK – so you get the law passed in FL – then what? Do you start campaigning in other States – or maybe you never leave FL? You must have had a traumatic bathroom experience and I really feel sorry for you.

    I don’t know how you would cope in Europe where it is not uncommon for women having to walk past mens urinals to reach their cubicles.

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