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Posted

This is from a longer video I did with me ranting about how disappointed I am with the lgbt and the direction they are going with some transgender issues here in the United States.  I feel this portion is good information for people to consider though. I trimmed off the rant at the beginning and the end, lol. I may sound exasperated at times through this so that's why. It had a longer context.

 

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Posted

I don't have time to watch the video right now, I have people coming, but I wanted to point out that schools having single person bathrooms would benefit not only transgender children but any bullied children, as often the bathrooms where the adults in a school are not present are a dangerous place.  Also children suffering from social anxiety, as going to the bathroom is a vulnerable feeling for everyone to begin with.  This issue is a wide one that would benefit many people for a variety of reasons.

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Posted

You're so awesome. That's exactly what I say in this video Bree.

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Posted

I'm scarred for life since the time I had to pee in a half finished bathroom over the summer at the college in the tiny town we lived in.  I went in, and...it was just a row of toilets.  No stalls, they weren't put in yet, but everything was working so the bathroom was technically 'open'.  I made Nikki guard the door to not let ANYONE in until I was done, the sheer thought of doing it the Roman way freaked me out.  It's such a tiny thing really, a moment out of my years of life, but I still clearly remember the terrifying feeling of being in that vulnerable position with the possibility of strangers.  Conversely, if the metal walls were there it would have been fine no matter how flimsy I know they really are, they are enough of a 'barrier' that my mind is convinced it's okay if I really really have to go, I hate public bathrooms in general. 

Thinking about that feeling in someone who at that time was in a pretty good place without any major social issues stirred up, I can imagine how much worse it would feel for people with a variety of social/public/bullying/you name it issues and think single bathrooms are a great thing. 

And, as people know, here is the irreverent Bree showing...you don't have to smell the person next to you or hear anything weird when they forget that that stall privacy doesn't pertain to some of the really odd conversations next to me, one of which I was GREATLY relieved to find out was about butchering a pig on a farm, but that fact came way late in the overhearing...and let's just say i was worried for a minute i was in there with a serial killer.  LOL  So many good reasons. 

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Posted (edited)

In DC right now it's the law that all single person restrooms are gender neutral. They've written the law so that converting a restroom is super easy. It merely needs to say "Restroom". If an establishment wants to spend the money to get one of those stick figure signs that looks like the seven stages of human evolution that people think they need for some reason it's fine but not required. That law needs to be made national and pertain to all single person restrooms across the country.

I had someone say to me once in argument "If you don't have one for the girls and one for the boys my child will be confused and ask me why.". I was at a local hospital with a friend who was having some pregnancy issues and to my delight found that they had changed all their restrooms at their Emergency Room to gender neutral. While I was there I asked people what they thought and no one even noticed until I pointed it out. They just thought it was nice that they could choose one based on convenience..

http://ohr.dc.gov/page/safe-bathrooms-dc

 

Edited by EricaRavenwood

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Posted

To be fair about the stick figure signs, the main argument in favor of them is people who don't read English need to know the bathroom is open to all.  And I imagine that in the capital, where so many translators make a living, there is probably a big segment of the population who can't read English well enough that the pictograph signs would help. 

And as for being confused at gender neutral bathroom, my response would be to stare at them funny and say "You really have male only and female only bathrooms in your house?  You don't share as a family?  Creepy..."  It's not like we don't all share at home.  I think part of the psychology here is the stranger impact in general.  Like I learned that day, it would have been really bad had a stranger come into the room.  And yet, not to be gross but it's important to the point, there are people I have peed in front of in various circumstances without a second thought, but I knew them well and that sense of vulnerability wasn't there. 

I can't speak to the pscyhology of the men obsessed with bathroom bills, but I think for women it's a tangle of that vulnerability and the unfortunate reality of growing up in a rape culture and it's effects.  We are very much taught from childhood to fear men to a greater or lesser extent, but I don't know any girls who weren't given that message personally.  I'm sure there may be some who were raised differently, but I have yet to meet them, so my perception is we all have it.  And detangling that is going to take a lot of time and change, not just in transgender rights, but women's rights and stripping down the rape culture so that the threat perception dies away.   I think the perception that this is ONLY about transgender people isn't really accurate or helpful to improving the situation.  It's as swirling complex mix of several issues that ALL have to be socially righted for real progress.  I realized the more I talked with Nikki over the bathroom thing and self examining my own innate fear of giving people like my ex husband a way in after me in a place I sought refuge from him and dates like him, that my initial resistance to the idea had NOTHING to do with transpersons at all, and everything to do with an innate fear of men I had been raised with and confirmed by ex-husband.  And that led me to realize that other women I spoke to are also entangling multiple issues.  And voting on them.

It's why I like the availability of single person bathrooms.  I would have no hesitation in general taking Nikki in female dress into the women's room with me...unless my friend Maria was there.  Maria was raped and has such a fear of men in any form I could not do that to her.   It's a very uncomfortable but real realization that in that instance someone would have to be harmed, either Nikki or Maria.  I'm not smart enough to even begin to know how to balance the rights of both to feel safe against each other in that example, but realizing that is what led me to realize we have to address a lot of factors before people can just pee and move on with it in a public setting. 

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Posted (edited)

See this is why I need you Bree. You're articulate and rational about the issue. You understand that when we pass legislation or policy it affects ALL people. Hopefully for the better. The tag line on the home page of my website is "It's not a trans thing. It's an everyone thing." and often this is where things get off track. The us and them mentality that creates a further artificial separation. 

I can't tell if you've listened to this video yet or not. We are certainly on the same page. But in this video I talk about the different dynamic in the women's room and men's room. A dynamic that needs to be protected. Can be protected. Even addressing the needs of some transgender people. The largest piece is we need to know what that means. We put forward a bill that says "Transgender" but what do they mean by that? Who does that cover? What are the defining parameters that determine you are transgender within this particular piece of legislation? Often they are written with a certain assumption. A certain idea of what transgender means and most often they are thinking of the binary male or female trans person who seeks standardized treatment. Never have I seen a definition given though. Simply the word transgender. We need to be smarter. We need to be honest in the conversations and these things become much more clear as to good solutions.

Oh and as far as the signs, economics of small businesses are a factor. Allowing them the option isn't a bad thing. People can be taught to recognize a single word just as they can recognize a symbol. And if the law applied to all there wouldn't be the need to suggest this one vs. another. They are all just single person restrooms. It's only a consideration now because we change them here and there only and you have to search for a gender neutral one.

Edited by EricaRavenwood
grammar ps last paragragh
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Posted

The world uses symbols to ease language and reading barriers.  A simple sign with a toilette on it would suffice.  EVERYone knows what a toilette is, and I've never met one that was male, female or otherwise.  Just cold, hard porcelain.

Just my zwei pfennige...

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