By Alex Saitta
December 3, 2016
I read the article about the transgender student in Pickens County, his arrest and the police confrontation concerning his bathroom choice. This is an issue facing school boards that parents are gravely concerned about, the board must educate the public on, and take a strong position against and clearly explain why.
The US Department of Education issued a directive to school districts that transgender students be allowed to “access sex-segregated facilities consistent with their gender identity”. This means a boy, thinking he is a girl, could then use the girls’ bathroom, locker room or showers. Crazy, I know, but that is the directive.
Thirteen states, including South Carolina, have filed suit to overturn this directive, stating the Obama administration (executive branch) does not have the authority to write such law and then withhold federal education funds to enforce it. I support our State Attorney General, Alan Wilson, South Carolina joining the lawsuit, and believe all students should use the facilities of their biological gender.
For now a federal judge has slapped an injunction on the President’s directive, awaiting consideration by the US Supreme Court. There are few transgender students in the school district and those who don’t want to use the biological bathroom, are offered the option of using a faculty (unisex) bathroom. This is what the Pickens County district administration means by dealing with the issue on a case by case basis.
As we all know, citizens are given the right to freedom of speech. However, we all realize that right is limited. For instance, it is illegal to yell “fire” in a crowded movie theater because such false alarms put others at risk of being hurt.
This bathroom “right” of transgender students’ falls short in a similar way. For example, my daughter is in 9th grade (a minor) at Pickens High School and she has a right to go to the bathroom or get dressed in a locker room without 12th grade boys who are dressed like girls being in there. Her right to privacy trumps that of the transgender student’s bathroom choice.