Transphobia and discrimination against the transgender community at large is nothing new. But the trend of “Bathroom Bills” (like HB2) is certainly catching fire around the country as more states push to limit transgender citizens’ access to using the bathrooms that correlate with their gender identity.
If you asked the legislators behind these bills, they’d probably tell you it was a safety concern, created by attacks carried out by people who are transgender. We know this to be false, based on pure research, statistics and facts. In fact, statistics suggest that transgender people are more at risk to be assaulted simply by using the bathroom, and not the other way around.
This is something Laverne Cox touched on during her appearance on Hardball with Chris Matthews, where she said that these bills are all about “erasing trans people.”
Powerful— Laverne Cox on transgender rights: “It’s about us existing in public space.” pic.twitter.com/J4QoyRBey8
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) February 24, 2017
YouTuber Matt Baume examined the hard evidence and data concerning these bills, and uncovered the (you guessed it!) inherent bias and ignorance behind them.
“Lawmakers claim that their bills will stop predators, and protect children.
They’re devoting a lot of thought to seats ― but not toilet seats, legislative seats. These discriminatory bills don’t protect citizens; they protect politicians. Here’s how:
In 2016, there were around fifty bills introduced in various states that discriminated against trans people ― not just in bathrooms, but in housing, education, employment, and more. And when you look at who introduced those bills, a funny pattern starts to appear.”
In his assessment, Baume found that there’s a similarity in the obsession to ban same-sex marriages prior to it being legalized (go figure) in 2004. That year, there were 11 states that put forward an anti-equality measure on ballots during elections, basically creating the very same “fear” that exists around trans people going to the bathroom, which is nothing other than ignorance.
“In fact, if anyone’s in danger, it’s trans people themselves. A Williams Institute study showed that 70% have been been harassed or attacked when trying to use a bathroom. So if politicians really cared about safety, they’d make bathrooms more inclusive, not less.”
Watch the Baume’s full assessment below.