What Do They Think Goes On in Girls’ Bathrooms?

Via Shakesville, this entire story is worth a read, but this type of thing kept jumping out at me in places:

When fifth grade started, Wyatt was gone. Nicole showed up for school, sometimes wearing a dress and sporting shoulder-length hair. She began using the girls’ bathroom. Nikki’s friends didn’t have a problem with the transformation; there were playdates and sleepovers.

“They said, ‘It was about time!’ ‘ Nicole says. She was elected vice president of her class and excelled academically.

But one day a boy called her a “faggot,’ objected to her using the girls’ bathroom, and reported the matter to his grandfather, who is his legal guardian. The grandfather complained to the Orono School Committee, with the Christian Civic League of Maine backing him. The superintendent of schools then decided Nicole should use a staff bathroom.


Last winter, Maine state representative Kenneth Fredette, a Republican from Penobscot County, sponsored a bill that would have repealed protections for transgender people in public restrooms, instead allowing schools and businesses to adopt their own policies. The bill was a response to the Maines’ 2009 lawsuit against the Orono School District.

It keeps coming back to bathrooms, and thus the conflation of “transgender” with “sexual predator.” But I just have to ask what exactly Republicans envision when they think of a ladies’ room?

Every girls’ bathroom I’ve ever been in has either been a one-room thing with a lock on the door, meaning you go in and only people you allow in are in there with you, or it’s got individual locking stalls so that you’re not, like, looking at people peeing or anything. Outside the stalls we often do secret sexy things like wash our hands and put on lipstick, things many women do in the presence of a penis on a regular basis without the world fucking ending. So what is the deal? What is going to happen that is some kind of violation?

Yes, in men’s rooms there are urinals, but I have yet to see a horrible panic in Congress about female to male transgender folks invading the guys’ shitter. It’s always the poor helpless chickadees who need protection from the presence of a Seekrit Dude. And if peen is the issue, where is the worry about women who bring their 12-year-old boys in there with them because Junior can’t be out of mommy’s sight for ten seconds, not even to pee? That makes me far more uncomfortable than wondering what kind of equipment the woman the next stall over was born with.

Is this some kind of fixation you get from watching too much repressive porn, or something? Where you think it’s a nonstop lesbian orgy in there, or it’s some kind of secret world where we’re all taking off our bras and dancing to Enya? I’m not in a public bathroom for a second longer than I have to be, because a) gross, almost always and b) better things to do. It’s not a hangout.

Unless you’re a family-values conservative trolling for some airport beejers, I guess.