There is another fine editorial in this morning’s Greensboro News & Record on House Bill 2 and the recent Fourth Circuit decision striking down Virginia’s discrimination against a transgender high school student. Its central message: HB 2 proponents need to stop, listen and learn. here’s the excellent conclusion:
“Unfortunately, instead of inviting dialogue, McCrory signed HB 2 only 12 hours after it was introduced. The lack of discussion was almost as frustrating as the impact of the ill-considered legislation.
In its opinion, the court noted public comments at a school board hearing in Gloucester County, Va., calling Grimm a ‘freak’ and a ‘dog.’ In North Carolina, transgender people have been equated to predatory men who want to disguise themselves as female so they can prey on girls in women’s bathrooms.
‘House Bill 2 was our effort to stop this insanity, and I hope this proves the bathroom safety bill has nothing to do with discrimination and everything to do with protecting women’s privacy and keeping men out of girls’ bathrooms,’ N.C. Senate leader Phil Berger said Tuesday.
What Berger calls ‘insanity’ modern medicine calls complexity. A group of 20 pediatricians with specialty training in endocrinology wrote to McCrory: ‘As professional experts in the field of chromosomes and genital anatomy, we provide professional consultation to our colleagues on babies in whom assigning sex may not be possible at the time of birth.’ They concluded: ‘Our patients already face major medical and social challenges and HB2 creates unnecessary hardship for these vulnerable youth. We respectfully ask you to repeal this hurtful bill.’
Grimm, the Virginia high school student, was diagnosed with gender dysphoria. People like him warrant compassionate treatment, not ridicule or worse. Hasty, uninformed lawmaking isn’t an appropriate response.
It’s natural that people react emotionally to what they don’t understand. In the end, public acceptance may be led by businesses like retail giant Target, which announced this week it will allow customers to use bathrooms corresponding to their gender identity. This probably is what they always have done, without anyone noticing.
The new court ruling should encourage a more reasoned discussion with consideration of medical information, not a knee-jerk political reaction.”