LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Transgender fears are ‘baseless, anachronistic’

Back during the Reagan administration, my husband and I vacationed on Barbados. While in Bridgetown one day, we popped into a mini-mall in search of a restroom. Espying what appeared to be such tucked into an alcove, I made a bee-line for respite. When I left the stall and went to wash my hands, in the mirror I noticed a man enter the facility and step into one of the stalls. I toweled my hands and left to find my husband standing outside, pointing up to signage indicating with international symbols that the restroom was unisex. I shrugged, saying, “While in Rome … .”

Indeed, in Rome, in that area of the city where the Pantheon is located, there are no public facilities, but a McDonald’s there is a popular stop for tourists in search of a bathroom. I have often thought about writing to the corporation to tell them that not all McDonald’s restaurants are “clean and snappy” places. The comfort station there was a single small room with two stalls, one for men and one for women. Because women take longer than men in the bathroom, naturally, the female line was longer. Desperate for relief when I saw the male stall was being used by women, I waited my turn to use that.

Maybe Ms. Debbie Hilton is somewhat more sensitive than I am, but when I really have to go, I’ll resort to a handy bush. Sadly, Rome is not known for its abundant shrubbery, or I would have walked out of that nasty restroom.

Ms. Hilton is appalled by the transgender drive against the “pee-pee” laws. (No ‘special accomodations’ for the transgendered,” Letter to the Editor)

I suppose she hasn’t tried to look at the situation from the transgender perspective. We are told by people with letters after their names that transgender individuals most often feel as though they were born the wrong sex and that they are uncomfortable in their own skin. So, naturally, a transgender person born male and altered to be female is more at ease in the ladies’ room than the men’s facilities, and likewise, conversely, individuals born female who elect to become male.

I feel as though I am a very conservative person but I don’t have a problem in the world with a transgender individual peeing in the stall next to me. I don’t even have a problem with some man popping into a women’s room because he really has to go. This is a non-issue in a large portion of the world.

As a hobbyist futurist, I perceive all sorts of much more interesting changes coming that will likely prompt apoplectic seizures in some: movements such as support group marriages (already happening in Brazil), and ultimately, someone suing to marry their dog. Never say “never.”

Despite all this, I only see two problems regarding the pee-pee conundrum. First off, the vast majority of people would not even know that the person in the stall next to them in a public restroom is transgender except that a vocal minority of the LGBT community is fueling the flames of this controversy. As is often the case, people are largely their own worst enemies.

Inasmuch as I don’t think that one’s sexual transition is a dirty secret people must guard closely, I think it rather too personal a concept to broadcast. That is one of the reasons I am very suspicious of Caitlyn Jenner’s motivations, but I would use the same restroom as her at the same time.

The only other tricky matter regarding the pee-pee problem that I can think of is the rare complication of transgender youth in public schools.

I challenge the more paranoid of our far-right friends to present statistics indicating the LGBT community is more inclined toward criminal behavior than the rest of society. I believe I’ve read that the reverse is actually true, so, I would be far less concerned that a child of mine might be raped in a school lavatory by a transgender individual than I would be mindful of the sheer numbers of so-called “straight” deviants who might be thus inclined.

I suppose I could have exercised more brevity, but my position might have come off sounding insensitive to Ms. Hilton’s perspective. I understand her apprehensions, but I think they are baseless, anachronistic and unenlightened.

Carol Hotte

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