By Kevin Miller |Coyote Contributor|
It is astounding to have peers who believe the minority should shelve their desire for equality for the convenience of the majority when, not yet halfway through 2016, 11 transgender individuals have been murdered in the United States alone.
2015 saw the highest number of transgender murders in history, at 21, and the number is expected to reach a new high this year.
In the post-Obergefell v. Hodges world, many politicians have had their ability to attack the rights of others limited by the scope of the ruling.
To fill this void, they have turned to creating rhetoric regarding the chaos facing Americans if transgender individuals are allowed to use the restroom matching their true identity rather than the one assigned at birth.
The Coyote Chronicle ran a piece last month on the transgender restroom debate that demonstrated both vile disregard for fact and willful ignorance on anything related to being transgender.
The author clearly misunderstood being transgender—suggesting individuals cannot identify as transgender and be religious or have their virginity intact.
She also believed in women’s only restrooms—meaning the author failed to understand that these laws force people who identify as men to share restrooms with women, rather than forcibly prevent from them doing so.
For those fearing gender neutral restrooms open the door to sexual assault, we have had multi-stall restrooms made gender neutral here on campus multiple times during events at the Santos Manuel Student Union. There has never been a report of attempted sexual violence during those occasions.
There have been attempted sexual assaults on campus, though, such as the one that occurred at the Pfau Library last year during the spate of increased crime on campus, yet none have been committed by someone playing the human equivalent of a Scooby Doo villain by disguising themselves as transgender to gain access to a different restroom.
And to respond to the claim that those of us who oppose restroom restrictions are irrational, or that the minority must mind themselves and allow the majority to have their comfort, I feel compelled to remind everyone that it has not even been 50 years since interracial marriage was legalized.
To say the minority should not be accommodated flies in the face of what this country is supposed to be.
If you think laws regulating restroom access will Make America Great Again, you will soon find yourself left behind: Economically, as companies choose the right side of history; socially, as your peers educate themselves and use their voice to support others; and in esteem, because you will become synonymous with that acquaintance on Facebook who thinks Olive Garden is the culinary apex and Chemtrails are being used to brainwash everyone around them.
Allowing lawmakers to propagate hatred—and allowing our misinformed and, in some cases, downright stupid peers to reiterate it—makes us complicit in the surfeit of murders plaguing the transgender community.
I will not stand by and let 2016 be another record year for violence against the transgender community.
I urge you, as my fellow Coyotes, as my fellow Californians, and as my fellow Americans, to find your voice and support your transgender peers.