Thursday, November 5, 2015

Inside the girls' locker room

  
   I had two columns in Wednesday's paper, which was unusual enough. I chose to post the one about Spike Lee's "Chi-raq" yesterday, and save this one, about the controversy around whether Palatine should allow transgender teens full access into their new gender's school locker rooms, for today.
     Though I have to admit, I started to get the nagging suspicion, reading my emails Wednesday, that I side too much with the school district below, and while I'm posting this today (every...goddamn...day) I'm considering taking another swing at this issue, either tomorrow or next week. Maybe I'll get it right this time. In the meantime, your thoughts are appreciated. 

     My wife and I, sitting on the 7:34 into the city Tuesday, immersed in our his-and-hers copies of the Sun-Times, both on the same page, at the same moment, reading the same article, headlined "LOCKED OUT," a story about Palatine School District 211 refusing to comply with Department of Education demands that it allow a transgender teen, transitioning from boy to girl, unrestricted use of the girls' locker room at one of the district's high schools.
     District 211 students are allowed to use locker rooms of the sex they identify with — itself perhaps a shock to those not been paying attention to the whirl of cultural change — but are required to use a curtained area to disrobe and shower. One transgendered student found this stigmatizing and sued. The Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights is siding with her. The school district is standing its ground.
      "This is a case where I'm inclined to side with the school district," my wife said.
      "Maybe," I replied. "But wouldn't the same rationale keep lesbian students out of the girls' locker room?"
     No surprise that my wife and I each approached this issue from our own gender viewpoints. She assumed the concern was teenage girls being exposed to the sight of the equipment of this female-in-mind-but-not-yet-in-anatomy transgender teen. While I assumed the problem was allowing someone who is physically a boy, despite her aspirations otherwise, into the girls' locker room, where she might nevertheless ogle her classmates.
     Not the most accurate view of transgenderism, perhaps. But this is a new world we've sailed into, and we should expect a bit of blinking surprise as the new scenery clicks into place. I don't think that makes me a hater.
     It's an astounding debate to be having. If acceptance of gays has been swift, on the glacial scale used to measure progress for women and blacks, then the shift in society's view toward transgendered individuals is doubly astounding. We seem to have leapt overnight from "Boys Don't Cry" contempt to District 211 jumping through gender hoops and the feds threatening to withhold millions of dollars because it isn't high enough.
     Two conflicting interests are in seemingly irresolvable conflict here: the desire of privacy among the cisgender teens, i.e. those content with the gender biology assigned them, and transgender teens who want to be waved into every corner of the locker room with no rude attention drawn to any inconvenient anatomical features.

     "The district really has worked diligently and mindfully on serving the needs of all our students, including transgendered students," said District 211 Superintendent Daniel E. Cates, noting that the district has been scrupulous about adjusting to students' needs.
     "If a transgendered student comes to us, we don't hesitate to change their name, or change their gender within our system," he said. "Many districts are struggling even with bathroom access, which is not an issue with us, because we are able to provide some privacy."
     "Privacy" seems the key concept here. Boys-becoming-girls can use the girls' locker room, but discreetly, behind curtains provided for that purpose. The district expects "commitment from any transgender student to simply observe an individual measure of privacy," Cates said. "We believe transgender students would prefer privacy areas."
     "Wouldn't all students prefer privacy?" I replied. I know two teens — no names please — who went through four years at Glenbrook North High School without ever taking a shower, to my knowledge, a practice which, I am told, is not uncommon. Maybe the result of this delicate matter will be that, in trying to accommodate exceptional students, the long loathed, strip-down-for-your-classmates locker room routine will be banished to history, along with naked swimming and posture lessons.
     "That's exactly what we believe may come out of this," said Cates. "Measures of privacy allow developing teenagers to choose for themselves whether or not to use privacy areas ... safeguarding matters for transgender teens we believe will be helpful to students in our locker room."
     That's how it usually works out. What seems like it might be a burden done for a few ends up benefiting all. While I'm inclined toward kindness toward any teen struggling with sexual identity, their fervent desire to stride easily into the girls' locker room and be welcomed as one of the gang is still, at this cultural moment, constrained if they also possess a penis. Like it or not, society is going to teach them that lesson; they might as well learn it in high school.

133 comments:

  1. My kids, girls, almost the exact age as your boys never showered at school,never considered it, ever. And they were never out of their underwear ( which covers about what a bikini does) except for the short times they had swimming and then like 99 percent of the girls they disrobed using a towel as a kind of personal privacy shield. I've been in women's locker rooms where there's been great derision expressed about women who walk around without their clothes on ( as opposed to standing at your locker, turning your back and being undressed fir a short a period as possible) n. The cultural expectation from my experience is that, for women, you cover up as much as possible as quickly as possible.

    As far as having a transgender girl in the locker room, my guess is that they wouldn't have worried about it for one second. They are much more accepting of the notion than most adults which definitely seems true of their generation at least the girls,( boys seem a little less accepting as a whole but maybe that's an unfair stereotype).

    ReplyDelete
  2. A fellow touting Bible cures for cancer, the montebank who would be President, Mike Huckleberry, claims it's a trick by guys trying to get a peek at naked girls. In the remote chance he's right, maybe shower room privileges should be reserved for those who demonstrate true dedication to the cause, by having a chopadictomy surgical procedure preformed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Interesting point, Bernie.

      Delete
    2. Those trannies give one the willies.

      Delete
  3. My kids, girls, almost the exact age as your boys never showered at school,never considered it, ever. And they were never out of their underwear ( which covers about what a bikini does) except for the short times they had swimming and then like 99 percent of the girls they disrobed using a towel as a kind of personal privacy shield. I've been in women's locker rooms where there's been great derision expressed about women who walk around without their clothes on ( as opposed to standing at your locker, turning your back and being undressed fir a short a period as possible) n. The cultural expectation from my experience is that, for women, you cover up as much as possible as quickly as possible.

    As far as having a transgender girl in the locker room, my guess is that they wouldn't have worried about it for one second. They are much more accepting of the notion than most adults which definitely seems true of their generation at least the girls,( boys seem a little less accepting as a whole but maybe that's an unfair stereotype).

    ReplyDelete
  4. I think you were spot on with the column to begin with. Those girls deserve privacy and concern as well. I disagree that they'd be fine about it, as the anon above claims. HE isn't any more important than they are in having rights. These are minor girls, after all.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And your point is? I keep thinking about all the bad policies kept in place, supposedly to protect children. The same logic was used to keep black people out of public swimming pools.

      Delete
    2. It's not at all the same thing. Point is your column was right as you first wrote it.

      Delete
  5. Simple solution: If the person who wants to be seen as a female has had the surgery to remove the male genitalia, then that person can use the girls locker room.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why, exactly? Because that's the only way to show true commitment to being transgender, even if the person is 14 years old and any show of nonconformity in high school requires some level of courage? Have there been reports of high school students pretending to be transgender in order to catch a glimpse of their classmates naked? Or because the girls in the locker room will suffer some damage if they catch a brief glimpse of male genitalia? In my recollection, it's pretty easy to avoid looking at that area of a person in a locker room setting. And what about girls transitioning to male? Must they also get surgery?

      Delete
    2. Society still sees a male as more dangerous physically than a female and it may be true, so they might not be as concerned of the female who is transitioning and wants to be in the boys locker room. If anything, she may be the one in peril from harassment of different kinds from the boys.

      Delete
    3. Wise words, Clark.

      Delete
  6. The issue is expectation of privacy, in this case physical gender privacy. Privacy for any should translate into privacy for all. Individual stalls with curtains should be provided, as they are in dressing rooms of retail clothing stores.

    As for the transgender female, must the ultimate acceptance be the right to stand unclothed with other females? Why?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think the issue is not the nakedness, but being treated the same as other females.

      Delete
    2. But he's not the same if he has a penis, or maybe it might be okay in the college locker room but not for the under 18 set. That doesn't mean the girls would be damaged if they saw male parts, that's not the point. I agree with those who say you belong in the locker room of whose parts match yours. And if it's too early to have surgery in the teen years, he can stay in the boys locker room in the meantime. I doubt any insurance pays for this-the parents should be putting this in the college fund. In ones turbulent teens who knows if it isn't just a fleeting phase.

      Delete
    3. This is not about nakedness; as I said above it's about the right to privacy. If it wasn't, why bother having separate locker rooms at all? Most students have found ways to avoid the "naked" issue by not fully disrobing or taking showers. But many still feel uncomfortable about the process. We obviously would never force a transgender to change in the locker room of his or her physical gender. In my school we don't force students with special needs to change in the locker room when they can't handle that intimate environment. It's not wrong for anyone to have an expectation of privacy regarding others. Is it wrong to force your personal expectation on others?

      Delete
    4. Wendy, those with disabilities are another story and this isn't the same thing. Unless one wants to say they are disabled in their psyche.

      Delete
    5. But Coey, she's not another female!!!!!!!

      Delete
  7. Thanks for this, Neil. I share your ambivalence. I've always been a liberal, but this issue is right on the borderline of what I find reasonable.

    The strongest argument for unrestricted access is that the people lining up against it tend to be Mike Huckabee and his fellow swine. And advocating access just because you despise the people who oppose it is not logic; it's a childish reaction. What I hate most of all is that issues like this hand ammunition to the Huckabees of the world.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Exactly-agreeing with the school district doesn't mean one is a religious fanatic.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Jeez, don't you wish this were the most important issue of the day!

    john

    ReplyDelete
  10. You've already nailed it, Neil. Nobody showers after PE. That had already stopped in my day—we went back to class in the same sweaty underwear and socks, many of us having changed pants under cover of a long, oversized PE T-shirt. Athletes still showered then, and even that's long since stopped. Unless this Palatine student has an uncommon commitment to hygiene, this issue is effectively moot.

    As far as acceptance of gays, would you really call that swift? It was an item of curiosity that our drama teacher was out, but I still would have worried for the safety of a classmate who came out. I was pleasantly surprised to discover a classmate's (8 years) younger sibling came out during their time in high school, and it merited barely a raised eyebrow. Workplace protections and marriage recognition still took most of another decade, or more. (Regional differences are not in play here—we're all GBN grads, too.)

    School authorities have long been in the business of protecting their students from fear, and that's clearly what Palatine is doing here. But you've also nailed that—this is no different than the fear of black people in previously-white pools. In 25 years, we have not seen the fear fulfilled of gay students "attacking" their same-gender classmates in these locker rooms. (How many of them will tell you about their own fear of consequences just of *looking* too long, let alone touching!) This is just another baseless fear. And this little tempest in a teapot is how our society adjusts and adapts to reality.

    This student at Palatine, she's the pioneer for the ones who will come after her. She'll weather this public storm so they won't have to. I have a few transgendered friends, and I still can't even imagine how distressing it must be to be *so* uncomfortable in one's skin as to *change* it. But they're my friends, and how do I *not* show repsect and compassion for them?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Disagree, Jindquist. First, some are still showering in the locker rooms in hs. Secondly, someone wanting to use a pool shouldn't be discriminated for skin color. This is hardly the same scenario as exposing one's private parts in the locker room of those of a different gender. So the race comparison that you or Mr. Steinberg use, is nil.

      Sandy nails it in the post below.

      NS don't second guess yourself due to some emailers. Frankly, it was a pleasant surprise to see you fall on the side of reason and not what is politically correct. Your wife has the right idea, according to your initial column.

      Delete
    2. Women don't want MEN in their bathrooms or locker-rooms, PERIOD ! Now just what the hell is it that we still refuse to UNDERSTAND ?

      Delete
    3. Fooled me, Smells like a troll. Why do people who want to IGNORE the lives of people they feel unworthy of consideration believe that ALL CAPS BULLSHIT goes down better than plain old lower case bullshit?

      Delete
    4. Please don't purport to speak for all woman. I, and plenty of women I know, would have no problem with a trans woman using the same bathroom or locker room. I acknowledge that there are plenty others who would have a problem with it. And others who might be mildly uncomfortable with it but don't care that much.

      Delete
    5. C- you should not purport to speak for all women either.

      Delete
    6. I agree. I'm pretty sure I didn't.

      Delete
    7. Not wanting a male in the female locker room does not mean one does not want rights for the transgender or feel unworthy. You are letting your arrogance show, Mr. Know it all Columnist who thinks he is always correct in his opinions. T'is not wise to jump to conclusions.

      Delete
    8. This misinformation is running rampant. My son showers at school often. What makes you an authority on high school hygiene? Oh and comparing white people being uncomfortable with melanin is not the same as the widely accepted practice of sorting people by sex in the locker room. The curtain seems reasonable. One fallout of this would be that female to male transgender people would have to use the boys locker room. Or do you think they should get a choice?

      Delete
  11. I still tend to side with the school district. (We live in District 211, and my son attended Palatine High School. When I asked him about the issue, he only said there were no known transgender students in his PE class.) It seems like a reasonable policy to have this student use a curtained area. I'm no lawyer, but if the transgender student feels stigmatized by it, what's to keep a cisgender student's parents from then suing the district for forcing their teen to experience discomfort in the locker room?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. good point , Sandy- The NORMAL student has the right to sue for comfort as well. And sorry if some writers don't like caps.

      Delete
  12. I honestly don't know what the best policy is in this case. I just hope it is arrived at by combining good sense with compassion, and perhaps with consultation with those knowledgeable about the matter, rather than by stigmatizing those who differ from the mainstream in some way. We seldom look back in pride at decisions made based on the latter.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Yes, siding with the school district does not mean one is stigmatizing the boy or being smug because he is not mainstream.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is not the same rationale as keeping lesbins out of the locker room, since they would have the same body parts as the rest of the girls. Apples and oranges, thus let's be logical.

      Delete
    2. Moderation is the keyNovember 5, 2015 at 4:05 PM

      We have bullies here, writer included, who will try to pound you into the ground if you do not praise their beloved transgender lib fest projects. No one had better agree with a more moderate thought blogger either, or one will get pummeled by the followers.

      So society must bend over for a few nuts who need a padded cell.
      Again, that is not to say transgenders are unworthy or that they should be picked on or discriminated against. It goes back to the locker and bathroom issue.

      Delete
    3. Moderation is the keyNovember 5, 2015 at 4:07 PM

      Get off your self-righteous kick, Newspaper man. That goes for a few others ad nauseum.

      Why should we get perversities shoved down our proverbial throats??? And who gives a shit about cap letters?

      Delete
    4. Too many ass kissers here. What Neil, you felt guilty after the Wednesday column? Or did some organization threaten to sue the editor? Alas...

      Delete
    5. Who's been pummeled? Most posters have been courteous in their disagreements.

      Delete
    6. MITK: "Threaten to sue the editor"? I can't imagine a crazy-hall-of-mirrors mind that would imagine that. No, I just noticed that the same vile band of crazies fighting gay marriage have sprung up to fight this, so assume they must be in the wrong. Letting black kids into swimming pools was also, once, an endangerment of girlhood.

      Delete
    7. Still say that's an apples and oranges comparison. It's not about nudity with the opposite sex among minors with some mixed up persons.

      Delete
    8. Many African-Americans would be offended, NS, at you putting that in the same category as racism. Chat with your co-worker Mary Mitchell some time or ST writer John Fountain or Jesse Jackson and see if they think it's the same thing.

      Delete
  14. Whatever happens, I believe this is an inevitable and positive step in the evolution of human rights and learning compassion for those who are "different" in some way. Someday I hope we get to the point where these "differences" become almost unnoticeable, and we realize how alike we all really are.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Brings to mind the phrase "You're unique. Just like everyone else."

      Delete
    2. Are you saying that someday you hope we won't be able to tell the difference between male and female? I need a clarification. Maybe you mean that someday you hope transgender women will completely pass for women? And men won't know or need to know whether they are dating one or the other?
      -GreatComments

      Delete
    3. SandyK- Evolution??? or insanity with the mainstream having no rights for themselves for being too normal???

      Delete
  15. Three comments. First of all, most middle- and high school girls do not like changing/showering in common areas and would vastly prefer privacy. Secondly, a transgender girl just wants to be treated like every other GIRL, and will certainly not use the locker room to wave her penis around! Finally -- and this applies more to the horrible campaign in Houston rather than Chicago schools -- if a man wants to get into a women's restroom to attack or abuse a woman, he can do that now, and such a man is not going to dress and act like a woman just to be a predator. A person who identifies as a woman in every way except anatomy would undoubtedly be extremely uncomfortable in a men's room. This whole hangup about bathrooms is ridiculous -- it's what doomed the Equal Rights Amendment many years ago. I'm saddened that we haven't progressed as a society since then.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Is it the transgender's hangup or everyone else?

      Delete
  16. Not an easy issue to sort out with law or regulation, but I'm inclined to go with the government. If the kid acts, dresses and feels like a girl she should have untrammeled use of the girls locker room, penis or not. She would be tormented in a locker room full of teen age boys.. Should one or more of the ladies be painfully averse to a glimpse of phallus, an unlikely eventuality in todays day and age, the parties concerned should be able to work it out without making a Federal case of it. If it does get into the courts one way or another, I would hate to be the judge who has to rule.

    Tom Evans

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tom, there is cause for worry in your scenario. The probability of positive outcome could be seriously reduced if an offended young lady's father has greater anger management issues then R.J. "One Punch" Vanecko.

      Delete
    2. One thing I didn't touch upon, and probably should have, is that 11 states, including California, have rules requiring transgender students to be allowed to use the locker rooms of their new sex, with the harm being about the same as the harm caused by gay marriage. It's another case of adults projecting their phobias onto children, who are terrified of changing in locker rooms already, no transgendered folk necessary.

      Delete
    3. Evans- that is surprising talk from one of your generation.

      Delete
  17. I wonder, Neil, if you would get as diverse and enthusiastic a response to an article on a school district mandating the introduction of certain mathematical concepts at an earlier age than customary.

    john -- how's that for a softball?

    ReplyDelete
  18. Get rid of PE classes. Problem solved. The found time can now be much better used to additionally instruct these children and perhaps close the educational gap that exists between our nation and the rest of the world.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As a fat kid in PE 50 years ago, I agree.
      The only time I was bullied was when a PE teacher told the football team to bully me.
      When my parents complained [it was a Chicago HS] all that happened was that the teacher was told to stop it & tell the football team to stop.
      No punishment of kind was meted out!
      PE teachers for the most part were lunatics then & from what I've seen over the years, not much has changed!

      Delete
    2. Would love to hear Jakash's opinion on this.

      Delete
  19. Very interesting discussion today.

    ReplyDelete
  20. This stupid idea is another attempt by Democrats to divide us into smaller and smaller subgroups, no matter who it hurts. Anyone who thinks a naked boy in a girl’s locker is a good thing, is living in a fantasy land, and inappropriately supporting the boy to attempt to live out his fantasy.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Believe it or not, idiot robot Republican at 8:48 pm, there are Democrats who might not want the boy in that locker room. Your paranoia and lack of logic is apparent and not surprising.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Here's the thing. I am fine with this person feeling they are female. As a person who was born female with the anatomy to match, I'm not sure what that means exactly, but I will go with it. You feel female. I will call you she and I will use the same bathroom as you. I will work side by side you and not give your Adam's apple a second thought, I will make you feel comfortable. What I will not do is knowingly shower and change my clothes in front of you or be anywhere around when you shower and change yours. You may say that I have no right to such privacy and the DOE may contort TitleIX to see to it that its made true legally, but I do have every right to do what I feel is appropriate, for me. If that makes you feel abnormal, I apologize. In reality, your feeling female is a bit out of the norm. All the pronouns in the world won't change that fact. It might be good to come to grips with it earlier rather than later. Today it's the high school locker room. Next, it will be college sororities, college boys not going along, the list goes on. If your womanhood rests on my willingness to be comfortable naked in a locker room with you, you may not feel as female as you think you do.
    -GreatComments

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm wondering, can you pinpoint why it is that that's a deal-breaker for you? What is the difference, for you, between changing your clothes in front of people who were born and remain female (some of whom may be lesbians) and those who were born male but have identified as female for many years? Do you feel the latter will be sexualizing you or looking at you with desire in a way that someone born a woman will not? Or is it some other reason? Not challenging you, just curious.

      Delete
    2. Hi Coey. No it is not because I feel like they would be sexualizing me. I cannot quantify what it feels like to identify as female. I don't understand what that means. So, while I am fine treating them as female because it makes them feel comfortable and I want them to be happy, I don't actually *believe* that they are female. I posted this on some other article...It seems the only time you get be something in your mind and then make everyone else go along is with gender. Why is that? If this student identified as an honor student except with all Ds, the school district could tell her to beat it. If she identified as a super model except with buck teeth, Tyra Banks could tell her uh-uh, honey. But because she identifies as a woman, we're all supposed to completely throw out our common sense and say "Sure"! If transgender supporters want to sway those who are actually willing to listen, you need to come up with something better than she is a girl because she feels like one and some doctors said its legit. The doctor also said physical therapy would help my wrist pain, and so far it ain't happened. Just about every doctor in the free world said too many eggs could kill you, but now its, oops not really.

      Now if you don't mind, how do you get your name to show instead of "Anonymous"?

      Delete
    3. My "name" shows because, at some point, I signed into the site with my Gmail account. I don't know that that's the only way, but once I did so, as I recall, I was able to designate a title for myself.

      Delete
    4. You raise some thought-provoking points. Perhaps the conflict lies not so much between what it is to be genetically/anatomically male vs female, but between societal constructs of what it is to be masculine vs feminine. And perhaps as society moves in a direction where the expectations of each are not so strictly defined, those who identify more strongly with the other gender can find an easier path. If more people had the "live and let live" attitude that you seem to, things would be easier all around.

      Delete
    5. The live and let live idea, doesn't belong in the ladies shower room with a guy strolling through it, whatever it is that he identifies as, though it's "pretty to think so."

      Delete
    6. Thanks for the tip on the name. For me, this is not about what society expects from a man vs. a woman. Like I said above, it is about the absolute requirement that I set aside logic and reason for this transgender person to feel normal. Anything less and I am called an uncompassionate, intolerant bigot. That is absolutely the wrong approach. Any other difference is to be embraced. I don't tell my children that they are white like the majority of the children in their school, nor do I insist the Principal make everyone believe that their melanin is a birth defect. Instead, I tell them to be proud of who they are because it is something to celebrate. It seems the opposite is true for transgender people. They are taught that to be happy/normal they have to be considered exactly the same as their chosen gender; the fact that they don't "fit in" is society's fault. I believe that pretense does a disservice to transgender people and makes society's reaction to them more painful. I would love to see the movement turn from sweeping their differences under the rug, to embracing that they are different and focusing on why we the rest of us should live and let live as you put it. I think this "the truth is not true" approach is doomed, and in this case, says more about male entitlement than it does society.

      Sorry that my responses are so long winded. I live in this school district, my son showers at school a few times a week so I have many thoughts on this.

      Delete
    7. I couldn't say it better, Anon at 6:21, especially about being called non compassionate or worse by the smug, holier than thou types, if the pc line isn't towed or below about how it affects other teams if these guys are on the girls team. However, if you re the one that gave put downs to Dems above, I disagree. Not all Dems are far left on all matters no more than all Repubs agree with out of touch Huckabee.

      Delete
    8. Anon at 8:30, thank you. I am not the one that gave any put downs. I am, however, the person who posted the thought about the teams below. That one was kind of out there, but in continuing all of this pretending, we might eventually get ourselves into just such a predicament.

      Delete
    9. BTW, since you've mentioned your son a couple of times, what thoughts has he expressed on the subject, if any? A voice from the trenches would be interesting.

      Delete
    10. Well, my son is probably not the best litmus test. He is not the most tolerant in general (I'm working on him). He gave his sister a good ribbing the other night because she doesn't like to eat breakfast and that to him is absolute blasphemy. He did mention that some female students in his school were discussing it last week and they were not supportive. He ended the conversation by telling me that he didn't have time to worry about "that mess" as he put his headphones on to do homework.

      I don't know if you've come across the letter from the DOE, but one point made in it was that the school district had created a private area in the locker room for the student and installed lockers for her and her friends so that she wouldn't be alone. Turns out none of her friends would move to the area with her. I'm not sure exactly why that was, but it could be telling.

      Delete
    11. Yes, that's very telling about where the friends drew the line and I think your son is not off base with the term "that mess." So don't work on him too hard. Let common sense prevail.

      Delete
  23. Well stated, anon at 3:32!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Anon at 9:25, you can also under select profile, beneath the typing box choose a name URL and then type that in. Your posts makes a lot of sense.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Here's one: It could be that they are undermining the very law that they are using to say this student has a right to go into the locker room.

    I mean, TitleIX is supposed to ensure that girls sports programs are equivalent to boys. We could get to a point where there were girls teams that were majority males who identify as female (because why would a coach pick a real girl over a girl that could play like a boy). Then we'd need a special Affirmative Action law that only applied to real girls to get any actual females on the team at all.

    I know this is crazy, but this is where we are headed with all of this nonsense.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are we really headed that way, though? Despite a lot of recent attention, this affects such a relatively tiny number of people. Reductio ad absurdum comes to mind. No need to weaken your overall argument by taking things to extremes.

      Delete
    2. It was an example. How absurd remains to be seen. It would depend on how really uncommon it is. Many children are given therapy and encouraged to hide this. If people become more accepting, it might be that transgender girls and boys are much more comfortable living in the open. There are 5 high schools in our school district and there is at least one openly transgender student in each school. The point is that there is much more to this than just letting this child in the locker room, even if my example was a bit extreme.

      Delete
    3. To anon at 9:17/ That does seem to be a higher than expected number for one school district. May I ask if you live in IL or California perhaps?

      Delete
    4. In IL (this very school district). Percentage-wise I doubt it's significant, but Superintendent did say that there were transgender students in every school. He didn't say how many total.

      Delete
    5. OK-Anon at 9:24. Thought maybe you lived in San Francisco.

      Delete
  26. Good food for thought, Anon at 7:34

    ReplyDelete
  27. I wonder how much of this is about the actual locker room vs. integrating with the girls. If the school district allowed her full use of the locker room, but was somehow able to stagger changing times so that the girls who didn't want to be weren't actually in there with her, would that suffice? Or is the issue to force the girls to shower/change with this student? This is probably not practical, but I wonder if it would still be considered a violation since she was able to use the actual locker room.

    ReplyDelete
  28. With that GLT whatever group steamroller, it was probably the latter, forcing them to change together. Heterosexual opinion or privacy rights aren't suppose to matter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh boo fuckin' hoo. You know, nothing is more unattractive than the dominant group getting a tiny whiff of the kind of you-don't-count exclusion that so many other groups deal with, then collapsing on the floor in a sobbing, self-pitying heap. This issue is, at heart, about social change, not about morals or privacy. As Mark Brown noted in his column, kids swam naked at Oak Park River Forest HIgh School 40 years ago. How they felt didn't matter squat. But let a transgender kid in, and people like you as swooning.

      Delete
    2. Writer man, could it be you are in the sitting on the fence closet?????

      Not that there's anything wrong with that.

      Delete
    3. But those kids weren't swimming naked or walking around the locker room naked with people of the other gender were they, Steiny? And we aren't talking about what Brown the do gooder says.

      Delete
    4. Nothing is more unattractive than a writer who attacks people in a terrible manner if they disagree with him or think the heteros are always wrong. He'll go ballistic if one doesn't want a transgender in the girls hs locker room, wow! Are you sure you are the one who wrote the article last week? What happened since?

      Maybe you have some trans or homosexuals in your family and then I can understand why you are touchy on the subject and no offense intended.

      Heard you speaking once, thought your voice would be deeper.

      Delete
    5. People like me? What group is that, those who don't fall into the anything goes thinking of people like you? Who keep making stupid comparisons to this and Jim Crow? And don't make the mistake of thinking this is about religion. Some People like me, are not very religious at all. Sorry if we don't kiss the alternative life style ass. No one is suggesting they should not get jobs or get beaten up, etc.

      Delete
    6. Since you have no daughters at Palatine high school, Steiny boy, and never had any, you are in no position to speak on this in such a strong manner.

      Now stop being an ass.

      Delete
    7. So now if the girls or their parents don't want the naked boy in their locker room they are bad exclusionists? Your logic must be addled.

      Delete
  29. Oh wow Neil...little rough on the beaver there aren't you? I think young women in a locker room not wanting a boy in the room with them being in various stages of undress should be respected. Sure, the Jim Crow laws from decades ago were wrong to have separate facilities for whites and blacks but you know this is not the same. Plus, are you saying the girls should suck this up due to the fact the kids swam naked 40 years ago? I don't get it. I have no issue with transgender, or gay marriage or a lot of things. I am a conservative but a social liberal I guess. Until this person has the surgery to transform his "outie" into a a "innie" then that person is a boy. Period. He can dress like a girl and take the hormones and do everything that is needed to prepare for the surgery where he actually transforms but until then he has a boy body and you have to respect the minor girls who would be upset with the boy being in there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Anon at 3:40 and right you are. See what I mean about getting pummelled. Then one person claimed it didn't happen. Of course it's his house so...

      Delete
    2. I guess Neil discriminates against high school aged girls then unless they kowtow to the trans boy. Read Bitter's and Clark's post. They said it right.

      Delete
    3. The boys parents need their heads examined if they hired a lawyer for this-as somebody said, save the $ for college. I say take a trip to Israel with that $. This isn't going to help the boy's popularity any.

      Delete
    4. I suppose. I just hate all the "protect the children" hand-wringing when we historically don't care WHAT kids go through, when they aren't being confronted with people of whom we disapprove. I would point you toward the original column; I thought Palatine did the right thing, and decide not to revisit it because it IS a thorny problem. It's the hypocrisy that bothers me. And also the solipcism. We suffer from such bone deep sexual panic in this country we forget that other countries people just shrug and strip down and get on with life.

      Delete
    5. Then move and see how well you'll fare overseas.

      Delete
    6. But some people do care what kids go through and not just when someone who we disapprove of shows up. And we approve of that boy,more power to him, just not in the gal's locker room, until he only has indoor plumbing.

      Delete
  30. And here I thought the purpose of commenting on a blog was to give one's opinion and accept that others might actually have a completely different opinion, without personally attacking them for said opinion -- and to attack our blog host on his own blog....it's beyond rude and ignorant.

    This isn't about GIRLS vs. BOYS. Neil certainly isn't discriminating against girls. My god, what if the situation were reversed: say a transgender female wanted full access to the boys' locker room? What's the big f*&%ng difference? Or do you think the boys would welcome the naked female into their locker room, because, really, boys just love ogling naked girls, but no girls would ever want to ogle a naked boy.?? Get real. This isn't about keeping private parts covered, it's much deeper than that. If you don't get it, then you'll never understand it.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Hey if the block host is rude, then he can expect rude comments back and SandyK you have misunderstood and twisted the meanings of some of the comments. Who said the girls belong in the boys locker room?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just a rhetorical question. But never mind; hey, who am I to try to moderate someone else's blog.

      Delete
  32. I really wasn't going to step in on this one, that's why I'm a bit late in commenting. One, holy cow are the comments all over the place. Take out gym class as a solution? Really? Attacking the host? Come on hive. We're better than that. Sigh. Anyway, it seems that a sensible solution would be to have a third option that's unisex with fitting room like curtains that anyone could use, sort of like the family restrooms. No one would be forced there, just an option for all. I can see the point behind the lawsuit. The student is being told you are different, so hide. That's just wrong. Americans need to stop being so body phobic. It's nudity, not sex.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amen, good comments Nikki.

      Delete
    2. That's an excellent suggestion, Nikki. I would have preferred that in high school!

      Delete
    3. Okay for the host to attack readers though?

      Delete
    4. Is a strong response an "attack"? And given that I'm the judge of what's okay on the blog, I'd say, by definition, yes. You are of course free to appeal to the Blogmaster, and I'm forced to respect h...what? Oh, he says I'm completely in the right. Carry on.

      Delete
    5. too much pot in Colorado, wrecks the mindNovember 8, 2015 at 7:06 PM

      Mrs. Niki

      Do you think school districts really have enough $ to be paying for unisex bathrooms to appease a few? Do you think local taxpayers would vote yes on a property tax hike referendum and have the $ going for the 3rd locker room or 3rd usage bathrooms in other parts of the school???

      Delete
    6. Few things are worse than ex- hippies.

      Delete
    7. Mind wreck-they could easily find the funds for such an option that could be used by any who chooses, not a select few. It's far cheaper than dealing w lawsuits. Take it out of the football fund for instance. Most districts could make it happen.

      Moderate-are you saying I'm an ex hippie? Gen X here.

      Delete
    8. Yeah, the football team gets all the money, good idea about taking it from there. Some colleges give better scholarships to football players over anyone else.

      Delete
    9. Good one, Mr. S-appeal to blogmaster, he approves, lol. Good to keep your sense of humor in this war zone.

      Delete
    10. Would this be a single person fitting room? Because over one hundred students can have gym at the same time (schools in this district tend to have 4 to 5 gyms). Of course they all would be female, but say half were. That's say, 60 kids vying for this one fitting room. I don't know how feasible that would be. This is nudity. Of 14 to 18 year olds. I wouldn't casually dismiss the ages involved.

      Delete
    11. *wouldn't be female...

      Delete
    12. Boo hoo- This male soldier doesn't want his hair cut short in the Army because he identifies as female. Rest my case, this isn't about rights anymore but off the ledge stuff-

      https://www.yahoo.com/politics/chelsea-manning-feels-like-a-1294507071078454.html

      I like your style, anon at 10:47.

      Delete
    13. Good one, 10:48 Anon

      Delete
  33. C-Presumably you are transgender then due to your comment on your high school preference. No offense was meant.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. None taken, Annette. I think you've set your record for aliases on one thread.

      Delete
  34. Who the hell is Anette? Ain't partial to being called girls names.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Just when you think there's nothing left to discuss here, there's a story out of Katy Texas where a 6 year old changed from girl to boy over the weekend and the kids at a Christian daycare got a crash course in transgender etiquette on Monday when first grade let out. Google Madeline Kirksey if you're interested, she was fired for not going along.

    Is any age too young? And do the parents of the other kids have any rights in this situation?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm not sure what rights they've lost here. The same rights to ostracize anybody they don't like. This is like complaining about an anti-bullying program. "You see, Sheila is really fat, and what about my daughter's right not to see really fat people....?" It is a tricky subject, still. But someday it won't be.

      Delete
    2. Still not the same as saying don't want to see a fatso. Not saying they should have rights to bully.

      Have never seen a blog post here still going strong, so many days after the fact.

      Delete
    3. Here is the link to the 5:31 anon's story-

      I'm surprised this lady could be fired since this is a Christian Daycare center and not a secular or govt public one. The fact that she's African American could make it a more delicate situation. I don't think she should be fired, but I did think the clerk in KY was right to be fired in her govt job.

      https://us-mg205.mail.yahoo.com/neo/launch?.partner=sbc&.rand=fa78o5v5c97gc

      Delete
    4. This is even more interesting than blogs on Romantic era writers, lofty as those may be. ;)

      Delete
    5. http://www.breitbart.com/texas/2015/11/09/christian-daycare-workers-fighting-back-fired-refusing-call-girl-boy/

      oops, try this link instead with copy and paste in the url line

      Delete
    6. I was thinking more like having their 6 year focused on mastering their handwriting as opposed to whether Sally is a he or a she. But you're right, that's not really a right. I didn't mention that the parents are two men because good parents come in any configuration, but I do wonder if this could be the little girl emulating the two people she loves most in the world.

      Delete
    7. interesting points about 2 parents being a man and how she emulates them

      maybe they are encouraging this

      not sure why they'd place a little girl with 2 men, unless one of them is a relative

      Delete
  36. That's not going to go over very well in that type of daycare but imho, the other kids and parents have rights too. By changed do you mean having surgery? Would any doctor do that at that age? They must have money to spend because it's doubtful an insurance would pay for that.

    .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No surgery. A short haircut, boy clothes, a new name, etc., you know all the things that make you a boy.

      Delete
    2. Earlier generations would have whipped this out of them.

      Delete
    3. The parents are probably nutty themselves.

      Delete
  37. So I suppose, anon at 11:50, she'll be in the 6 yr olds boys bathroom then. That's looking for trouble. Indeed anon at 11:54, she should be focused on math or such.

    ReplyDelete
  38. It would be interesting to read what the child psychiatrists would say and those opinions would prob differ.

    ReplyDelete