Dear Queerty: We’re Pissed! (Literally!)

In response to yesterday’s post about problematic bathroom divisions:


Dear Queerty,

So the point of your article is, “uh, yeah I understand that transgendered people have had their lives threatened and been beat up in restrooms, but some of us are just darned pee shy so that’s more important”?! Wow, shame on you for being no more enlightened than FOX News. You’re actually proud of that? I think its a shame that many of us spend 20 years IDing as gay and fighting for gay rights, but the minute we transition, we lose all support and apathy from our gay “brothers” and “sisters”. Your “pooping” rant is even worse than the “support marriage ban homosexual marriage” rant. [Ed. note: No it’s not. Our pooping rant was hilarious! James Dobson can only wish he were this funny! Sorry, back to the letter about why we’re terrible people…] The GLBT means we are supposed to stick together and make eachother safer and supported. You’re sounding like a Log Cabin Republican. Thanks for the fight to continue having transpeople unsafe when they use the restrooms, thanks for trivializing our safety.

So you’re saying if we remove the gender separations from all the communal bathrooms and make everything unisex, then thugs won’t beat up transsexuals in there anymore? Mmmmm…not convinced.

In all seriousness, despite the crazy post yesterday, changing the communal bathrooms to “unisex” will probably have no affect on anything. Everyone will just use whichever bathroom was originally intended for them anyway. They’ll peek in, see who’s in there, see if there are urinals on the walls (men’s) or not (women’s), and choose accordingly. Speaking from experience of being at colleges with unisex communal bathrooms, this is how these situations work out.

Legal accommodations should definitely be made for people who are transsexual, as well as people born without a definite gender (1 out of 10,000 babies in the US). Really, all people should be allowed to use whichever facilities they prefer, depending on how they identify, and everyone else should mind his/her own business. Since that’s not going to happen any time soon, so it’s best to protect them as well as possible.

But going into the University of Colorado’s Student Union and changing all the communal bathrooms to “unisex” is not going to protect anyone from getting beat up, as you suggest in your letter. Such a move is not going to educate anyone. Instead, it gives the trans-bashing thugs a chance to go harrass women while they’re on the toilet. The bigots aren’t mad that the transsexuals are in the “wrong” bathroom. They’re mad that they are transsexuals, period. It doesn’t matter where they are.

So what is the answer? Who knows… Providing a separate bathroom in the building somewhere for transgendered students sounds a lot like the days of separate drinking fountains, as if the trans person would be required to use that specific facility.

From the tone of your letter, it sounds like this issue hits close to home. If that’s the case, we’d appreciate hearing more of your perspective, or anyone else in a similar situation. Thanks for writing.