On The Bathroom Law

Okay, first of all, let’s clarify what we’re talking about here. Nobody is really concerned about a member of the opposite sex who has undergone, or is presently undergoing, sex change therapy walking in on them while they are undressed. That’s my opinion, anyway.

Someone who undergoes sex change therapy is probably interested in having sex with someone of their birth sex. It would make more sense to me to be afraid of someone who wants to undergo such therapy walking in. By North Carolina law, as I understand it, they would be required to do so against my wishes. So what’s really going on?

Why should we have to be afraid in the first place?

Why is the debate going on as if the solution were not obvious? The obvious solution is to make all publicly used rest- or changing- rooms private. Money might be involved, but whether the overall cost would be positive or negative is not entirely clear. Facilities, after all, would not have to be built in pairs. Meanwhile the obvious advantage of eliminating the inequality of the chance of encountering a line at the doorway to the men’s room or the women’s room, or of being propositioned by the guy at the urinal next to you, would be substantial.

The last advantage occurred to me when I heard an advocate for North Carolina’s bathroom law on the radio and found myself labeling him as “sounding gay.”  “Unfair!” you may rightfully charge. But that is what happened.

And think about it. The only ones who like the two alternatives I see being expressed here are those few who would either lie about their sexual identity to fraternize in a state of undress with those to whom they are sexually attracted, or those who would use the status quo to fraternize in a state of undress with those to whom they are sexually attracted. Ether group, by my reckoning, would be frustrated by eliminating the fraternizing part from the equation.

What I suspect is really going on here is nothing short of a bias so many of us have against people who identify with the sex opposite that with which they have been labelled by society. I.e., those who would  be interested in a sex change. They can just hold it, for all we care.

But if technology makes it possible to change how society sees us, why not? Do we really care what the sex of the person in the stall next to us is, or was at birth? Don’t we just want to be left alone?

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4 Responses to On The Bathroom Law

  1. Roger says:

    George,
    I’m over sixty, and have been using public restrooms with average regularity most of that time.
    I’ve been assaulted by filthy conditions, pissed off when there is no paper, embarrassed by dismal grammar, gagged by foul air and choked on cigarette smoke. I worked in gas stations as a teen and have unpleasant and gross memories about cleaning them.
    In that entire collection of public bathroom visits, I NEVER had any experience that in any way involved anyone’s sexual identy. I usually have a specific job to do, like to do it, wash, and get out.
    There must be a voting base somewhere that has been identified as “too stupid to find the polling place”. There must also be advocacy group, or fifty, that hopes the desire toDefending these types of “Loo Laws” is an attempt to encourage them to learn

  2. Roger says:

    George,
    I’m over sixty, and have been using public restrooms with average regularity most of that time.
    I’ve been assaulted by filthy conditions, pissed off when there is no paper, embarrassed by dismal grammar, gagged by foul air and choked on cigarette smoke. I worked in gas stations as a teen and have unpleasant and gross memories about cleaning them.
    In that entire collection of public bathroom visits, I NEVER had any experience that in any way involved anyone’s sexual identy. I usually have a specific job to do, like to do it, wash, and get out.
    There must be a voting base somewhere that has been identified as “too stupid to find the polling place”. There must also be advocacy group, or fifty, that hopes the desire to defend these types of “Loo Laws” will help these same voters get out the map.

  3. Hank Raymond says:

    George, I think you got some things wrong there. One is your assumption that someone undergoing sex change therapy is interested in having sex with someone of their birth sex. Sexual identity is one thing. Sexual orientation is something different and separate. Another is thinking that these people are more likely to be propositioning people in the rest rooms. Propositioning in rest rooms goes on all the time, but it’s usually men propositioning men, just ask former Idaho senator Larry Craig https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Larry_Craig_scandal. Your concern about “fraternization” is concern for an imaginary problem.

    • George says:

      Okay, then we at least agree that propositioning, if it goes on at all, would not be minimized, and perhaps would be exascerbated, by the North Carolina law, correct? Hat I don’t get is why the issue of privacy is not the issue?

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