Without more inclusive and intelligent discussion on the issue of transgender, it is only a matter of time before tragedy ensues.
A federal judge ruled that students who identify with the opposite sex must be allowed to share ‘private spaces’ and dorms at a Christian college in Missouri.
The Biden administration’s plan for destroying privacy, public safety and common sense took another big step towards fruition as Judge Roseann Ketchmark ruled against the College of the Ozarks, a private Christian college that had sued over transgender discrimination policies laid out in Biden’s January executive order, “Preventing and Combating Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation.”
Represented by attorneys from the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), college officials were hoping to be excused from a Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) directive that requires any facilities falling under the Fair Housing Act to open female dormitories and bathrooms to biological males, and vice versa.
Judge Ketchmark, who was appointed to the bench by former U.S. president Barack Obama in 2015, shot down the lawsuit. Although lawyers for the college had argued on behalf of Title IX, which provides exemptions for private religious institutions, Ketchmark ordered the college to comply with the Fair Housing Act, which falls under HUD’s jurisdiction and to which exemptions are limited.
The College of the Ozarks (C of O) is facing a setback with the Biden administration’s Fair Housing Act. C of O will have to allow people of the opposite sex in dorms and shared shower spaces to avoid being fined once the Fair Housing Act becomes official. https://t.co/8rlQ1enaxm
— KLST TV (@klstnews) May 20, 2021
Attorneys for the private Christian college expressed disappointment with the ruling, saying it will serve to “victimize” females in the future.
“Women shouldn’t be forced to share private spaces, including showers and dorm rooms with males, and religious schools shouldn’t be punished simply because of their beliefs about biological sex,” Julie Marie Blake, senior counsel for the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), told reporters following the case.
“The Biden administration’s overreach continues to victimize women, girls and people of faith by gutting their legal protections, and it must be stopped,” she continued.
Ozarks President Jerry C. Davis also had some harsh words following the decision.
“Religious freedom is under attack in America, and we won’t stand on the sidelines and watch,” Davis said in a statement. “To threaten religious freedom is to threaten America itself. College of the Ozarks will not allow politicians to erode this essential American right or the ideals that shaped America’s founding.”
Meanwhile, College of the Ozarks Chief Communications Officer Valerie Coleman told reporters the school would likely file an appeal.
“We will continue to fight,” she said.
And just like that, the nation is right back to square one in the great transgender debates, which impact an infinitesimal segment of the population, yet present serious legal risks for institutions in the form of expensive lawsuits.
Conservatives enjoyed a brief moment of normality when, in February 2017, Republican President Donald Trump rescinded Barack Obama’s so-called ‘toilet laws’, which required public schools to let transgender students use the bathrooms matching their chosen gender identity. Schools that did not comply with the law were at risk of losing their federal funding.
Now the Obama-era legislation is right back in the saddle and riding America over a cliff.
What is at stake is the right of a religious organization having the right to refuse a government order if it conflicts with the group’s beliefs. A similar case was heard in 2018 by the Supreme Court involving a Colorado baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple due to his religious convictions. The Court ruled 7-2 that the baker was within his rights under the First Amendment, which guarantees freedom of expression. The ruling, however, did not address the questions as to whether a business is also protected by such considerations, saying this “must await further elaboration.”
Perhaps the current case involving the College of the Ozarks will be the one that provides “further elaboraton,” should it reach the Supreme Court.
In the meantime, millions of conservative Americans are left feeling dazed, confused and even angry, wondering how such a law, open as it is to manipulation by any number of individuals with less than virtuous intentions, could have made it this far up the political food chain. Aside from lawyers, who stand to reap a windfall in sexual abuse cases, does anybody honestly believe that giving biological males a free pass to use the private facilities of their choice is a great idea?
In 2016, YouTube personality Joey Salads decided to perform a live experiment with the new law favoring transgender people to see how it would play out in real life. Although some may argue that the video is puerile and immature – be forewarned, Salads is more of an entertainer and comic than any researcher – it seems to be a very good indicator as to how a real-life situation involving transgender people would play out. In any case, I know of no other time when the law was put to the test in such a way.
The conclusion seems convincing and worthy of further consideration. Of the four times Salads attempted to enter a women’s bathroom, he was verbally assaulted and told to leave three of those times; the only thing that seemed surprising was that one of the women was actually comfortable with the idea of sharing the facility with him.
Based on the conclusions of this one experiment, clearly a different approach to the question of transgender men sharing personal spaces with women is needed. Currently, all of the attention is being focused on the rights of the transgender man or woman, while the concerns of the biological female are casually and unforgivably dismissed as somehow unimportant. In fact, that has been the very same approach when it comes to deciding whether biological males should participate alongside females in sporting competition. The opinion of the natural-born females seems like an afterthought and irrelevant, a scenario that could see the women’s movement set back many decades.
Without more inclusive and intelligent discussion on the issue of transgender, it is only a matter of time before tragedy ensues, and both transgender men and women, as well as millions of born females, find themselves at risk more than ever before.