Saturday, July 09, 2016

Texas and other states sue to block feds transgender bathroom rules

Texas and 10 other states sued to block federal regulations regarding transgender bathroom rules.  blogger comments in [ ].

"The officials, in states from Arizona to Georgia to Texas to Wisconsin, brought the case in Federal District Court in Wichita Falls, Tex., and said that the Obama administration had “conspired to turn workplaces and educational settings across the country into laboratories for a massive social experiment, flouting the democratic process, and running roughshod over common-sense policies protecting children and basic privacy rights.”

[The regulations were not issued directly by the President, but by the U.S. Dept. of Education and Justice.  What role, if any, the President played is unclear although his approval is not formally required.  Congress has power under the 14th Amendment to legislate to protect constitutional rights and has delegate some of that power to agencies such as DOJ and DOE.  Further, states that take federal money for public education agree to abide by federal regulations.  Everyone is eager for the money, but not the rules.  This is not to say, however, that agreeing to take the money waives objections to legal remedies for unlawful federal action]

[Similar hysterical fears, etc. were utilized to oppose racial desegregation and the ill-fated equal rights for women constitutional amendment.  It was argued that black use of public and school restrooms would spread venereal disease.  The it was argued that the equal rights amendment would allow men to use women's restrooms.  Both assertions, were, of course, false.

However, the case now underway has  issues that make it more problematic.  Although I support accommodation of transgender people and laws to protect them against discrimination, my concerns are as follows:
1. The regulations were issued hastily without much thought on how they would be implement and paid for in the real world.  It was unclear how safety and security problems could be handled.
2.  There should have been an opportunity for input from the states, schools, parents, students and other stakeholders.
3.  Parents have a right to be leery about school safety issues.
4.  Perhaps some compromise could have been worked out that would have satisfied all parties.
This smacks of the heavy-handedness of the feds that offends many on both the left and right. On the other hand, the situation involves individual rights of a constitutional basis which the federal government has constitutional authority to regulate.  I just think things were done too hastily. 
What will be the final results?  Perhaps the feds will back off and try to find a compromise solution.  This would be a good approach.  However, if the case gets to the Supreme Court, I predict the states will lose.

Here's one group's defense of the rules.  I don't know if I buy all of it, but there it is.  Here's a good article from Time looking at the debate.


  1. "Transgender" is another example of what Heinlein called "the crazy years" of society.

    Transgender is an effort to proclaim that feelings and opinion outweigh biological reality. Basically, it's a psychiatric problem of unhappy people.


  2. Individual rights must be balanced with the public good. We agree the 2A is not absolute as violent criminals and the mentally incompetent are barred from possessing arms. Public safety is a legitimate rationale. Transgender minded folks are not blocked from using restrooms that match their physical gender. This could be biological or a surgical change. It's offensive to compare the "gender identity" pretense with racial discrimination. Federal bureaucracy has stepped far beyond our country's foundational design. It's up to congress to move toward decentralization of domestic policies while respecting basic natural rights.