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What Really Bugs Me About Debates About Trans People and Restrooms

Discussion in 'Chit Chat' started by Hot Pink, Feb 19, 2013.

  1. Hot Pink

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    It happens in every debate involving trans people and public restrooms and locker rooms. Some person hops in with this, "I don't think it's appropriate to expose women to danger." Whether it's danger from abuse, rape, or sexual harassment, it still comes up. Every time. There's a few things wrong with this argument that I really don't think that they understand.

    The first thing that's wrong is that it assumes that trans women are men. Not only that, but predatory men who creep into women's restrooms to assault people. Their reasoning? Trans women are perverts who dress like women and because of this, they're unpredictable and capable of anything. How many women get assaulted by trans women? Besides, the most common place for women to be sexually assaulted is in their own homes, not public restrooms. By husbands, boyfriends, friends, acquaintances, even family. The myth of the lurking trans woman is just that: a myth.

    But what about if a man decides to put on a dress and go into a restroom? This is the second problem. First of all, I doubt that many men are willing to do this outside of a crappy comedy routine. The reality of a guy donning a dress is harsh. Too many guys are insecure with their masculinity to attempt such a thing. They're too wrapped up in what others might think.

    This problem continues into the arguments used against gender neutral restrooms: that women are put into danger by being in the same restroom with men. Both of the problems described in the last two paragraphs are highlights of a huge problem with society: rape culture. Everyone assumes that men want to rape. Not some, all. Not only is this assumed of all men, but it is considered by many to be the natural state of heterosexual male sexuality.

    How insulting is that? Men? Yeah, they have no self-control. This myth is perpetuated by almost all facets of media and in everyday life. The idea that men are just a second away from screaming into rapist rage. This is a double-edged sword. It makes women frightened almost all the damn time. Also, it makes the real rapists think that what they do is normal. It's not. Plus, it makes all of the normal men out there seem like beasts. This is why rape jokes aren't funny. It makes rape out to be funny and of no consequence.
     
  2. Eatthechildren

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    I don't see the point in gendered bathrooms at all... Can we just have a "stand up" toilet and a "sit down" one?
     
  3. Bree

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    Before I continue, I would like to clarify that I would love to see gender-neutral washrooms, and don't understand why people get so worked up about it. It's not like they would involve different sexes doing their business in plain view of each other--that's what stalls are for.

    I'm going to ignore, in the following, that men aren't the only people capable of rape, because I'm responding to a post, not giving a two-hour lecture.

    An estimated 1/4 to 1/3 of women in Canada will be raped at some point in their lives. If that number is connected in any way to other statistics of violence, it's probably higher in the US...and it's a LOT higher for transpeople, of which you are one.
    You're right, most men aren't rapists. In fact, a lot of men who have committed rape probably don't realize it, just as many woman don't realize they've been raped. If she says no, and he persists and she puts up with it, or if she's drunk, regardless of what she says...that's rape. Rape can occur between two people who have been dating and sexually active for a long time, or even a married couple. It doesn't matter if they've had sex before, consent must be given for each occasion.

    Now, let's talk about violent, stranger-holding-you-down-in-an-alley-with-a-knife-against-your-throat rape (that might be a gun in the mental image of an American. I've never seen a handgun except those of police officers). You're right, it doesn't happen very often--but it does happen. I'd like to give you a quote from a teen fantasy novel about that, actually. The Will of the Empress by Tamora Pierce. The characters are talking about a local custom that allows a man to kidnap a young woman to be his wife, but is very uncommon and distasteful in practice.

    "You judge us all by the actions of a few, Cousin."
    Sandry made a face. "I'm sorry, Ambros," she apologized, her voice still raspy. "I'm overwrought, I suppose."
    Ealaga sighed. "Really, my dear husband, for a man who is so clever, you can be so shortsighted," she said with unhappy patience. "What else is she supposed to do, when any unmarried woman of western Namorn must live her life and judge all men by the few who have successfully stolen women away? Each time a man succeeds, we place our daughters and our sisters under new restrictions. We give them new signs that a man in whose company they find themselves might plan to kidnap them. Don't we teach our women to view all men according to the actions of a few?"

    We can't just stop worrying about rape. That would be stupid. If fears are going to diminish, rape is going to have to diminish first.
     
  4. Pret Allez

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    Well, here's another reason the bathroom debate is so bad: what happened to concerns that predatory cisgender lesbians will rape people in the bathroom? Oh ya, they've never been voiced.
     
  5. Just Jess

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    I don't think it's appropriate to expose trans women to "danger" either :|

    It really is incredible though how much is in place to keep a girl acting like a boy and how many obstacles there are in place when she wants to step outside of that role. I'm pretty sure that's what the bathroom debate is really about. Us weirdos are okay as long as we're safely out of sight and out of mind. If we need to use the restroom, we'd better do it at home.
     
  6. The trans bathroom thing is stupid. A much more serious problem is the bringing of small children into different sex bathroom. I live in fear a toddler will attack me in the middle of a public bathroom.
     
  7. Sinopaa

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    The whole separate bathroom concept is beyond ignorant. We are there to do what every other woman does. I usually don't enter a packed restaurant thinking "I wonder if I can get 5 seconds of a rape in before the woman screams and I get swarmed by people?". Rapists target women that are alone and vulnerable; not in a public area that has people close by.

    Besides, how the hell would the rape even work? There is no way to keep the victim quiet or what you are doing discrete. Those bathroom stalls are small and cramped; your victim is going to be able to make a ton of noise. Don't forget that people would constantly be going in and out of the restroom. Besides, there are the after-rape factors. You have to keep the victim incapacitated and inconspicuous to the crime as well as not look like you were just in a struggle. The chances of being able to pull such a feet off is probably worse that winning the lottery. There is literally no logic behind the rape defense in keeping us out.

    Why not just go full blown paranoid and have gay and straight bathrooms? I mean, lord knows there's a chance that a rabid lesbian might rape a straight woman! And we should go by age too; because a group of teens might try elder abuse in a restroom while no one is looking. But wait! There's also a chance of a racial hate crime. Yup, best bring back segregated restrooms just to be sure! Idiots should not govern things they do not understand. :eusa_doh:
     
  8. photoguy93

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    Great thread, because I was just thinking about this. I went into a new Starbucks the other day (new in the last year.) My friend and I had to use the bathroom. I walked up and took a double take. Both bathrooms were M/F. It was the same exact sign. I was like "WTF?" I'm so accustomed to to each gender having his or her own bathroom. I think it's a really wonderful idea.

    What about big restaurant restrooms, though? Where women hang out and do makeup and all of that fun stuff? I'm not joking - it really popped up in my mind. Because you can't say "oh, well, just make that a sitting room" because then some people will feel left out.
     
  9. OMGWTFBBQ

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    So in an ideal world men don't "want" to rape women, it doesn't happen?

    Forgive me, l am a little slow. But applying the social construct theory of gender to situations where biological women can and historically have been assaulted by biological men is interesting to me.

    You're willing to overlook it because it doesn't fit in with the way you view "men" or gender roles but you simultaneously put an entire group at a disadvantage and ignore the entire history of the world.

    Anyway, if these locker rooms just let MTFs in l wouldn't see the problem.

    And l agree with you that it's rare that a man is just going to put on a dress so he can walk into one, if he does l would chalk it up as a freak occurrance and get over it.

    The concern is that they would be made entirely gender neutral, which l'm not sure of, l don't think that would necessarily happen.

    But to assert that if it dd these whiny, dramatic women shouldn't be complaining about the potential dangers of changing and showering around horny, cisgendered heterosexual men is again, interesting.

    Are you really saying that even as a transwoman you'd feel 100% safe around those men?

    A locker room is the one place you should feel safe, you can make the argument "it could happen anywhere" but that's entirely the point, it could happen anywhere and it shouldn't be ignored in a place where it could happen more easily
     
  10. Just Jess

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    Just up front I personally don't think gendered bathrooms do anything one way or the other to prevent bathroom rape. I think knowing everyone has a cellphone with a camera does a lot more.

    Also I kinda like having fun debates with people fwiw.

    See but where do you draw the line? Do I have to pass really well or maybe already have hormones or even surgery? Male-to-female is a process. I mean I guess wearing women's clothes would be a good line. But the difference between leaving the house dressed and being able to get changed somewhere is, you wouldn't believe. Home is where your neighbors you might not be out to are.

    Basically this would mean that every trans person would have to go from 0 to 90 MPH just as soon as they're starting out. Way not cool.

    Honestly I don't feel 100% safe around anyone dressed up. Especially women. Either bathroom, I run the same risk of harassment. And harassment is a thousand times more likely to happen to me than rape. It's just as likely to happen in the girl's room as the guy's. So basically, I'm screwed either way. I'm exactly the same rape risk either way since if a guy wanted to rape me a little stick figure wearing a triangle isn't gonna stop him. It's a coin toss, like the exact same consequences, and society says "okay well guess what you're technically a guy". I mean I'm cool if you don't see eye to eye but that's basically how it comes across.

    Also there are gender neutral bathrooms lots of places. They're usually called "family" restrooms and I'm learning where they all are.
     
  11. OMGWTFBBQ

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    Right, but, we can't impregnate you let alone transmit an STD to you unless we try HARD to do so, lol.

    l've seen the family restrooms, here it's not a deal where strangers go into together, though, it's like multiple toilets and no stalls for one family.

    l have less concerns about bathroom than locker rooms/shower rooms but l wouldn't call either entirely safe.

    l don't even feel awesome about female bathrooms in sketchy areas but most women have the sense to avoid them.

    l'm not sure why people think a person being assaulted can or will be helped right away, especially in a situation like the showers where a person could be hushed or, even say that the rest of the people in the area were women who were too scared (and usually too defenseless, yes, we can be and often are defenseless lol) to help.

    As for how transwomen get in, l won't speak for other women just like nobody can speak on behalf of all men and declare what they are or are not capable of, but if l saw a person who l did suspect was MTF using our locker room l wouldn't say anything.

    Some women might, l think that would be obnoxious.

    So that's my only "pass", l really would have no issue with it since it's not going to be terribly common anyway.

    People probably think it's easier to avid the debate by just going completely gender neutral. Like l said, l don't know how that's going to hold up.

    l'm not going to rage about it, l just find the way actual statistics and known dangers are being discarded in favor of one group's ideology a little :confused:
     
  12. Just Jess

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    I see where you're coming from here. I'll be the first to say that cis guys are just by the numbers more like to rape people.

    I still feel like what we've got for trans people kinda sucks. When I had to get change in the locker room in guy mode I found the best way to be invisible was to be the uncomfortably comfortable being naked guy :lol: But as much as it would be another step in that direction I would so not put on a one piece swimsuit in the men's locker room unless there was a lot of money coming my way for it. I mean I'm gonna have to deal with enough BS, I shouldn't have to be a spectacle just to swim laps in a pool. And I mean from my point of view, telling me the reason I should is because I might go crazy and rape people is :rolle:

    I know cis women have to feel safe too. Rape is real and I know how empty at least the men's changing room gets. I'm betting they both get that way. And I mean I can totally get why someone would not feel right about a "man" changing in there. You don't even need to go to rape. You being uncomfortable, that's enough. Because that's all I want, is being comfortable.

    But I think there are way better ways to handle things than what people are talking about. Even a gender neutral changing room would be awesome. Even better would be private shower stalls and lockers. I know it's way cheaper probably to have things the way they are but if a locker room were set up like a bathroom it would solve so many problems.

    And until then, I think the better thing to make everyone happy is to just change the culture. If it wasn't a big thing for trans people to use the locker room for the gender they identify with, then I think everyone would feel safe and comfortable and there would be no more rape or violence than there already is. If I saw someone starting something you bet I'd step in and put a stop to it after calling the cops. I think the only reason things aren't that way is just 'cause we're used to gendered bathrooms and locker rooms.
     
    #12 Just Jess, Feb 19, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2013
  13. OMGWTFBBQ

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    l think a more secure shower area would actually be a good idea. in regular locker rooms it's just a flimsy curtain which is also scary in case a lone man did just walk in, which is unlikely but since it's a same sex locker room nobody thinks about it.

    l've never been raped fortunately, l think if l had the entire concept would affect me a lot more but because of that l have to wonder about women who have been raped.

    The only difference between us is that one has been raped and the other hasn't.

    l'm not even really someone who identifies with a lot of "women's issues" in some ways, but it's unfortunate and true that rape is a universal issue for all women.

    But l do think a gender neutral room with actual stalls that lock around the showers and other measures to make it harder for rape to happen are a good idea and could ease a lot of the worries.
     
  14. Just Jess

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    Sorry I not-very-ninja edited on ya.

    I'd definitely have a different point of view if I were ever raped too. And I'm not too happy about moving myself into a higher rape risk. I'm with you on wanting to keep the locker room safe. Definitely rape prevention should be kept in mind. I don't want it happening to me either and things suck too much in that department the way it is already.

    I think Hot Pink was more talking about people that just flat out don't want MtF people in the woman's room at all and were saying increased rape risk justified it, like by itself. I mean, both MtF and FtM people need to have some kind of option. That problem isn't just gonna go away. And when people use it the way she was talking about, I feel like it's really a lame argument. The whole thing shouldn't be swept under the rug like that.
     
  15. midwestgirl89

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    That would require people to acknowledge that 1. Lesbian sex is real and not a figment of our imagination. 2. Lesbian rape exists. and 3. Women (of any orientation) are capable of rape.

    What is stopping people from going into a women's restroom right now to rape? As far as I know, there is not a security guard at every women's restroom. The female symbol on the door does not magically keep women safe from harm.
     
  16. jadakiss97

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    this doesnt really relate but it reminded me of it. When coming out to my boyfriend telling him i was pangender, he offered to build a bathroom with the pangender symbol so i could feel special :grin:
     
  17. Deaf Not Blind

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    Let me tell you something that really bothered me about 2007 at my church main campus. There is def probs in big churches, the pastors delegate assuming they got good underlings in charge of Sunday Schools, Nurseries, etc., but they don't know! You know? It gets to be like any govt or corporation, run mechanically and losing its logic and soul in the process...def not what God wants,huh!

    I was trying to find some way to volunteer and serve, I had been turned down a few times, once for singing which now I can bet is cuz I am going deaf...didn't know in 2004. But in 2007 I had a job paid on Wednesdays to be a helper for a woman with the older kids, and Sundays unpaid helper for kindergarten Sunday School. There were many issues, but the one in regards to men....

    Remmy, I was not aware of transgender, not even heard the word, I don't think even LGBT yet. Still, I have been always a defender of men's rights and that means not being treated like all are evil. It is VERY pervasive in my town.

    So I asked for some reason, "Why are only women in nursery and preschool?" I got told they were not allowed under any circumstance to enter the nursery. Felt odd. I guess someplace (maybe ours or another church) had a molestor before "serve." I asked why would you forbid good Christian daddy from helping out in nursery if he wanted to (mind you I hate poo and diapers no way I would go in there), and the reply was that any men who volunteer to work in the nursery will rape the infants.

    Okay, how about the women? They are so gooooood huh? You think they will kiss em but is fine, if man kisses them he is perv?! Do you have any idea how angry that made me? No I was not aware I was a man, but I boiled inside...cuz I know feminists spew that in the world culture how men are all pigs, but nowhere in the Holy Bible does it say all men are molesters forbid them from ages 5 and under but high school middle school college is great. Bunch of Bullshit! It is enough my dears to almost make me wanna prove it by volunteering in that yuck fest place AND transitioning in front of them to see if suddenly I go from wonderful angel who is such an amazingly gifted teacher to a scary molester-to-be! Really!!

    Whew! Ok now I got that out...
    In DC, my college don't have em, but another uni has Gender-Free restrooms as well as segregated, guess what? It is well used by everyone. Nobody raped yet girls!
     
  18. redstormrising

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    Rape in public bathrooms does happen, but if we were to desegregate the big multi-stall restrooms, i would be more concerned about harassment and lower-grade forms of sexual assault than full-on rape. I have enough of catcalls out in public on the street, I don't need to be subjected to that when I am trying to attend to private bodily functions. Yes, a lesbian could do this as well, but the notion that a woman's body is on display for public commentary seems to be peculiar to males. I also don't have any interest in getting groped in a private space where there are no security cameras. Groping already occurs in other situations where the groper feels he might get away with it, i.e., on a crowded subway, so I see no reason to feel secure that it would not occur in this situation. And lest people think that bystanders would intervene, Kitty Genovese anyone?
     
  19. Deaf Not Blind

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    This is because in mid-1800s the 2nd Great Awakening and the politics at the time merged together a new concept that men were by nature more vulgar and carnal, they drink hard liquor and become violent and cannot instruct the children in proper Christian behavior. Since they are inept, Women are virtuous in comparison, the fairer sex having little to no carnality and only nurturing qualities, it is their duty to be the one in the home responsible for bringing morality to the household, instilling in their children good values.

    Eugenics is a load of crap...men are not apes, we are equal to women not lesser, and I say we need to get rid of all bigotry...don't allow any cuz culture says it is cool. Anytime you see somebody even on EC belittling any group, even if you don't like em, stand up and tell them off...

    if you don't, one day it will lead to something far worse than no bathroom privileges...

    ---------- Post added 19th Feb 2013 at 06:52 PM ----------

    Europe...like Rome...they have all 3 kinds. What are stats on rape being higher because of having family or gender free choices?

    ---------- Post added 19th Feb 2013 at 06:57 PM ----------

    ^ I like you.
     
  20. Pret Allez

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    Could we not have feminist-bashing constantly?