by Jay Johansen | Jun 4, 2016
I've seen a comment from liberals pop up on a lot of forums that goes like this: "How could we possibly enforce a rule that says you have to use the bathroom of your biological sex? Are you going to have guards at every bathroom examining people's genitals?"
Well, hmm. This was pretty much the rule from when public bathrooms, locker rooms, and showers were first invented until now. The ancient Roman bath houses under the Caesars had separate sections for men and women, or if the bath house was too small for that to be practical, they scheduled separate times of day. (VRoma Project, "Roman Baths and Bathing")
This rule was enforced with little apparent difficulty, then or now. It was not necessary to have professional guards at every bathroom because every user of the bathroom acted as a guard. If a person of the wrong sex entered, someone would politely tell them that they had made a mistake and this was the wrong bathroom. If they didn't quickly apologize and leave, then you called security and they would be escorted out.
Most people are able to distinguish men from women without an intimate examination. If you have difficulty doing this, I suggest you ask the nearest 6 year old child for help. Sure, some people manage to effectively disguise themselves as a member of the opposite sex. But even this requires considerable effort. A man can't just put on a dress and lipstick and fool people. Did some men slip into the women's locker room this way? Sure, but not all that many. And any man who was caught doing this faced criminal charges.
We have laws against stealing, even though it is not practical to have guards posted at every aisle of every store. Do people still manage to steal? Of course. But no rational person concludes that this makes laws against stealing unenforcable and pointless.
Liberals routinely say that of course the point of these laws is not to allow creepy old men to get into the girls locker room and gawk at them while they shower. The purpose is to allow transgender people to use the facilities of the gender that they identify with. Ok. So how do you intend to keep the creepy old men from going into the girls locker room to gawk at them while they shower? Are you going to just accept this as "collateral damage" from your new policy? The 50% of the poopulation who are female must lose their privacy rights to avoid making the 0.3% of Americans who are transgender not "feel uncomfortale"? ("Study Shows How Many Americans Are Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender") Or will you post guards at the door of every bathroom to keep the gawkwers out while letting the true transgenders in? How will they tell the difference? This started when you said that it is wildly impractical to have guards at the door of every bathroom checking people's private parts. So instead, your alternative requires that we have guards at the door of every bathroom conducting psychological examinations of gender identity and motivation. One person I talked to said that judges would have to determine whether a person was truly transgender on a case by case basis. So at the door of every bathroom we not only have to have guards, but a full courtroom with a judge?
But underlying it all, this argument shows once again that liberals can't keep their own story straight.
If their point is simply how difficult and impractical it would be for these supposed guards to determine a person's biological sex, why don't they say: "You'd have to have guards at the door of every bathroom who would take a saliva sample, and who would have a portable laboratory where they would test the DNA to determine their biological sex." That would be the true definitive way to tell, and saying that would make the whole process sound even more difficult and cumbersome and impractical. But no, they always say "examining genitals". Why? Surely it is because they know that people cringe at the thought of some stranger groping in their pants. These are very private, intimate parts of our bodies, and we don't want strangers seeing or touching them. But the whole point of the objection to this new policy is that we don't want to allow strange men to watch girls use a bathroom or take a shower. So the liberals defend a policy that calls for a gross violation of people's privacy, by arguing that the only alternative is to violate people's privacy. And we are supposed to be so shocked at the idea of a stranger seeing our private parts, that we acceept the idea of allowing strangers to see our private parts.