22 May 2016

My Real Motivation (!)

You've probably heard, by now, about the "bathroom bill" passed in North Carolina.  In essence, it says that people have to use public bathrooms in accordance with the gender indicated on their birth certificates.

Since this a blog about cycling (well, mostly), I'm not going to get into what the law means for transgenders, or people in general.  I am fortunate, I guess, in that it's been a long time since I've been hassled about being in the "wrong" bathroom.  One thing I wonder, though, is whether or not I need to carry a copy of my birth certificate with me if I ever have to change flights in Charlotte, or go to the Tar Heel State for any other reason. In case you're wondering:  Yes, my birth certificate says I'm female.

Anyway, in fairness, I'll point out that North Carolina isn't the only jurisdiction that has such a regulation, whether in the letter of the law or in effect.  The probable reason why the law has made gotten so much publicity is that the state legislature voted for it, and the governor signed it, the day after the city of Charlotte passed its own law saying that LGBT people would be protected in "public accomodations", including bathrooms. 

Also, this is a Presidential election year and although North Carolina voted for Mitt Romney four years ago and for every Republican candidate since 1980--with one exception--the margins of victory have been slim.  (That exception came in 2008, when Barack Obama took the state from John McCain.)  Also, there are pockets of the state, such as the "Research Triangle" and much of Charlotte, where Democratic support is almost as strong as it is in most Northeastern states and coastal metropoli.

But about the bathrooms:  I hope that no place where I cycle will ever pass its version of a "bathroom bill", and that no ride organizer will institute such a rule.  After all, organized bike rides are among the few arenae in which the lines for the women's rooms are actually shorter than those for the men's rooms.  

Now you know the real reason why I "changed" my gender! ;-)



  1. Heaven help us if politicians ever require labeling portapotties as either "men's" or "women's" or even with other gender interpretations.

  2. Steve--Can you imagine a fight over portapotties like the ones about school bathrooms. You know, lots of people will say they're trans so they can go into a portapotty and peek! (Never mind the smell!)

  3. On another note, I know people with health issues who sometimes can't wait and use the most available restroom. Fortunately, I live in a tolerant state (California) so typically do not have to deal with these issues, but I certainly feel for those in other states/localities who do.

  4. Expect to see a bunch of states put bills like this on their ballots to make sure that any republicans feeling ambivalent toward Trump don't stay home from the polls in November. Stuff like this really pisses me off.

  5. Frenchy--Good point. In fact, I've actually seen menstrual women duck into a men's bathroom because it was available and, well, their period wouldn't wait.

    Brooks--Unfortunately, you are right. The hardcore right/religious fundamentalists still aren't crazy about Trump but will do absolutely anything to keep Hilary or Bernie from being elected.