School Board Member: Trans Students Should Be Castrated Before They Can Use Restrooms

kathy-svensonDelta County School Board Member and otherwise seemingly harmless old white lady Kathy Svenson of Colorado wants what’s best for the children. In her mind that apparently means castrating transgender students who try to use the bathroom.

At an October board meeting, Svenson attempted to warn her fellow board members of new issues they would have to face sooner than later, including the rights of transgender students. Svenson referred to an article in the Education Reporter on a recently passed law in California allowing trans students to participate in sports as well as to use the locker rooms and restrooms of the gender with which they identify.

Svenson vowed nothing like that would happen on her watch, at least “not until the plumbing’s changed”:

“I would like to pass out something that shows people what is going on in the rest of the country. Massachusetts and California have passed laws relating to calling a student, irrespective of his biological gender, letting him perform as the gender he thinks he is, or she is. I just want to emphasize, not in this district. Not until the plumbing’s changed. There would have to be castration in order to pass something like that around here.”

Though her comments have, unsurprisingly, stirred up controversy, Svenson is standing firmly/leaning steadily/sitting sleepily by her views.

“One of the board members said that she had gotten comments from my district, that the people are very unhappy with me commenting, they’re very abashed about what I said,” Svenson told KREX TV. “I don’t have a problem if some boys think they are girls, I’m just saying as long as they can impregnate a woman, they’re not going to go in girls locker room.”

Delta County District officials adopted a policy in June prohibiting discrimination against any student and so while they respect Svenson’s opinions, they won’t be changing anyone’s plumbing.

“We truly believe in Delta County School District, that every student has different needs, and that we are here to address those individual needs,” said assistant superintendent Kurt Clay. When asked if the district would ever “consider” Svenson’s castration comments, Clay replied flatly, “Absolutely not.”

As for Svenson’s opinions, they’re doubtless from another time and another place, namely California — headquarters of the Pacific Justice Institute. Last month PJI fabricated a story about a trans teen “harassing” her fellow classmates by using the girls’ bathroom.

Kathy Svenson has a point: the rights of trans students is an issue coming to Colorado, and around the country, but she and PJI should remember that these students are just kids — and they’re just like the other kids they’re so intent on saving.


Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #colorado #discrimination #transgenderrights stories and more


  • ted72

    I have to agree with this woman. Until the gender has officially been 100 percent changed, you’re still technically the same gender. It’s not fair for others to need to accommodate those who later choose not to go through with their operation. That’s just selfish. I’ve dealt with students who are “going through the transition”, but layer decide nah, I’ve changed my mind…

  • Thedrdonna

    @ted72: Are you gonna pay for them, then? It’s an expensive surgery and most insurers don’t cover it, but you wouldn’t propose a classist barrier against a downtrodden minority, would you?

  • 2eo

    Let her know how you feel.

    Katherine Svenson
    1759 G Rd
    Delta, CO 81416-3004

    She makes public statements and stands by them, therefore she has waived her right to privacy, feel free to contact her directly, nicely of course.

  • Dakotahgeo

    I would usually say, “Colorado… kind of says it all,” but that is not necessarily the case any more. Colorado is progressing at a faster rate today and for that they must be congratulated. This old hag is a relic of her time and will soon be passing on to a nursing home where she can’t harm anyone anymore. She’s to be pitied!

  • Cam

    The problem is, the bigots keep contradicting their own bigotry.

    They seem to not want trans students in the bathroom because why? They are afraid of a “Man” in the women’s bathroom or a “Woman” in the Men’s room?

    Ok, well but they ALSO were terrified when they were fighting against the repeal of DADT that there would be men attracted to men in the men’s bathroom.

    So now, you have a transgendered woman, who most likely is attracted to men, and this woman is staying they need to stay in the men’s bathroom. Well but that is exactly opposite of the LAST bigoted bathroom argument they have made.

    They need to get their bigotry straight.

  • 2eo

    @Cam: To be fair though Cam that confused me and I agree with you I think.

  • Homophile


    You know nothing about Colorado.

  • Dakotahgeo

    @Homophile: Heh heh heh… ohhhhh yes I do. Probably more than you do even if you live there. I have many informed friends in a number of professions. Now gently move along, you’re blocking the more intelligent traffic!

  • delalunar

    This woman’s problem is based more on her feeling that having a penis= rape. Or at least inevitable, rampant pregnancies? From her Facebook page heroes

    This attitude sounds like she may believe lots of troubling stuff about the population of male students generally. Why is this person allowed to be on a school board? Unsurprisingly/thankfully, she has no sons– but she also doesn’t seem to be recently familiar with school. The official board page says she homeschooled her only daughter for “7 of her first 8 years.” But her daughter (Leanna Cinquanta) shares online that the family moved a lot when she was growing up because she was homeschooled before that was legal and they had to avoid detection. On Facebook, she moves every 1-3 years from age 7 to 15. She does seem to have graduated from a highschool in Minnesota in 1988, but she had only moved there in 1986, soooo I don’t know what’s going on but it’s sounds like her mom isn’t familiar with the real world at all.

  • KDub

    Isn’t that what they want though? Lol She may be a bit angry, but she does raise a valid point; what happens when trans rights start to impede on the rights of the other kids? Hmmm…

  • 2eo

    @KDub: In what way specifically is that possible, or even inferred?

    Direct question, no need for deflection, just answer it directly as it is asked. No pressure.

  • Christopher22

    Are we forgetting that the school board did NOT agree with her? They voted in a non-discrimination rule.

  • Cam


    LOL! Sorry,

    Basically, they seem terrified that there would be people in the bathroom attracted to other people in the bathroom.

    So leaving the Transgendered woman in the men’s room would be exactly what they claim they do not want. You have somebody who identifies as a woman, and is attracted to men, in the men’s room.

  • Cam

    @KDub: said..

    “She may be a bit angry, but she does raise a valid point; what happens when trans rights start to impede on the rights of the other kids? Hmmm…”

    Exactly which “Rights” of the other kids are being infringed? I wasn’t aware that there was a section of the Constitution that stated you cannot be in the same room with a transgendered person.

  • Texasteacher

    Again, people not bringing their professional mouth to work! She wouldn’t have the school district defending themselves from the panic expressed by the public if she wasn’t trying to be profane. Suggesting that a portion of students should be castrated was just needlessly inflammatory. This all reminds me of the panic about getting rid of DADT and the restroom/shower worries. Chances are, many reading this have a gym membership and share locker rooms there with both gay and straights. Chill out world!

  • vklortho

    @KDub: I’m pretty sure there are almost no doctors out there who would go any sort of genital related surgery for some one under the age of 18 for trans reasons. Even the vast majority of trans people are only in favor of letting younger trans people have blockers until the age of 18 and then letting them decide for themselves how they want to go from there.

    I don’t think a lot of these people exactly realize how this whole transition thing works in some ways. To even qualify for most forms of genital surgery (whether SRS or an orchiectomy or whatever), surgeons require a letter from a psychiatrist stating that you have lived as your target gender for at least an entire year. Unless you just hold it every single time you are out in public and have to go to the bathroom or you have access to gender neutral restrooms every where you go then you are going to have to use your target gender’s bathroom eventually during that year. Even if every single trans person had their surgery covered and every single trans person wanted to get surgery there would always be trans people who didn’t have it using their target gender’s restroom simply because of the RLE(Real Life Experience) requirement.

  • corey

    @ted72: your going to demand a 10 yr old get a sex change? Before adults are allowed to actually get “changed” they have to live like the sex they will becoming for two yrs prior from what I understand, so it would actually part if the process to let these young folks spend atleast two yrs living like the sex they will become, on a day to day basis, meaning, using the bathroom of the sex they will change too.

  • robdnvr

    If it’s an issue then they should either add unisex bathrooms or let the trans identifying kids use the private bathrooms used by faculty.

  • Teleny

    I think the right wingers are so obsessed with sex that they can’t imagine anyone using a bathroom unless they are trying to hook up la Republican Senator Larry “wide stance” Craig.

  • jwtraveler

    @ted72: @KDub: Why are you people so obsessed with bathrooms? What do people think is going on in there? I go to the bathroom to pee and shit. I don’t really care about who else is doing what else in there. When I was in college in the 1970s, we had co-ed dorms with co-ed bathrooms. Nobody cared except the occasional uptight visiting mother. While people are terrified of trans-kids in the bathrooms, football players all over the country are raping cheerleaders and getting away with it while the girls get punished for it. But they don’t care because football players are gods. It would be nice if these concerned citizens focused on real problems instead of panicking about non-existent ones.

  • Degas

    Does this woman think that trans kids are whipping out their d*cks and showing it off to the other girls in the bathroom? Ask any trans person and they will tell you they are repulsed by their own genatalia. This is something one is born with, identifies as, just as homosexuality is.

Comments are closed.