I’ve been thinking a lot about this. I have no idea why. Maybe because my social media feed is filled with photos of absolutely hideous transvestites, inviting me to imagine them with cameras, trying to take photos of women’s genitalia in bathrooms.
Imagine this in the bathroom with your eight-year-old daughter, they say.
I’ve thought about it. A lot.
And you know what? I honestly don’t care if this dude wants to use the stall next to me. I really don’t.
Now, your mileage may vary, and you will probably disagree vociferously with me, but I don’t care. I know a variety of people – men, women, genderqueers, and transvestites. I have a vast array of friends. I refuse to judge them. They are who they are – intelligent, funny, loyal people – and I wouldn’t be friends with them if they weren’t. And I really don’t care if they want to use the same bathroom as me.
Being a transgender doesn’t make one a pedophile.
Being gay does not make one a sex abuser.
Being male does not make one a rapist.
If you look at who the perpetrators of child sexual abuse are, 60 percent are not strangers in a bathroom. They are family friends. They are babysitters. They are neighbors.
Moreover, 30 percent are actual family members, and only 10 percent are actual strangers.
If I have a child with me, damn skippy I’m going to be vigilant and watch them to ensure that nothing happens, but that’s not limited to public bathrooms – whether gender neutral or not. That’s just common sense.
I’m not worried about sexual assault in a gender neutral bathroom any more than I’m worried about sexual assault at a bar after a night of drinking. Being vigilant, being observant, being aware of one’s environment are much more effective strategies to prevent sexual assault than keeping a guy dressed as a woman out of a bathroom.
I have a much bigger problem with governments regulating bathroom facilities than I have with transgenders using them. I’m a grownup. I am perfectly capable of making an informed choice about where to spend my money without states and localities making laws and deciding for me. I’m sure all of you are as well.
If a restaurant only offers a gender neutral bathroom, you are free not to patronize it if you don’t feel comfortable. You are certainly not free to demand they accommodate your discomfort and use government force to get your way.
It works the other way too. If you are transgender, I assume you are intelligent and mature enough to decide whether you want to spend your money at a business that only offers single gender, multi-occupancy bathrooms and will not allow you to use the bathroom of your choice. You have every right to walk away and spend your money elsewhere. What you should not be able to do is force the business to bend to your desires at the point of a (figurative) government gun.
Trust me, if someone wants to commit sexual assault, they will do it. They certainly don’t have to put on a dress to facilitate the act. Frankly, if someone is turned on by another person taking a steamy deuce in a bathroom stall, they have bigger problems than feeling a bit girly.
If you’re a business owner, decide what kind of facilities you want to offer and clearly mark them.
Ensure the stalls in your bathroom facilities do not have gaps between the doors and walls. Ensure they’re solid, like they are in most European bathrooms. No peeking. No problem.
Know you won’t satisfy all people at all times and no matter what kind of facilities you decide to offer, you will probably piss someone off, because that’s how people are.
As for me, I just don’t care. Make sure it’s clean. Make sure it’s operational. Make sure it doesn’t reek, and is well-stocked with soap, toilet paper, and other necessities.
That’s all I need.