The most dangerous, and underreported, part of Obama’s transgender edict
May 20, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – For all the justifiable press coverage of Barack Obama's federal guidance on transgender students in the public schools, its most dangerous provision has largely gone unnoticed – and it has nothing to do with bathrooms.
The most outrageous provision of his transgender bathroom order does not even involve locker rooms, where teenagers of the opposite sex will change and shower next to one another.
The most offensive part of the new policy is that, under the Obama administration's federal guidance:
School districts must allow biological males and females to spend the night together in the same hotel room on field trips;
Colleges must let men who say they are transgender be roommates with one or more women; and
School officials cannot even tell those young women or their parents in advance that their new roommate is a man, without risking a federal lawsuit.
The plain wording of the Obama administration's diktat is clear enough, yet it has not been reported, even by conservative news outlets.
Republicans get it wrong, again
Since the Obama administration announced the federal guidance last Friday, several Republican elected officials have said that its definition of a “transgender” person is vague or ill-defined. That's absolutely wrong.
The eight-page letter clearly states that, as far as the Justice Department and the Dept. of Education are concerned, a student becomes a member of the opposite sex the moment he feels like it. The instant he tells school officials about his decision, they must immediately treat him accordingly.
“When a student or the student’s parent or guardian, as appropriate, notifies the school administration that the student will assert a gender identity that differs from previous representations or records, the school will begin treating the student consistent with the student’s gender identity,” the letter says.
That's it. The student doesn't have to meet any other conditions to change his sex – in fact, school districts are prohibited from setting any. “Under [the Obama administration's unilateral rewriting of] Title IX, there is no medical diagnosis or treatment requirement that students must meet as a prerequisite to being treated consistent with their gender identity,” the letter says.
That clarifies – mandates, really – that a student doesn't have to have surgery, take hormone treatments, or present himself in any way as a member of the opposite sex. He can continue looking and acting as a male but say he identifies as a female. After all, that's sort of what “gender non-conforming” is all about.
Just as there is no minimum threshold required to qualify as transgender, there is no maximum limit to the number of times a student can change genders. “For some people, gender is not just about being male or female,” CNN reported. “In fact, how one identifies can change every day or even every few hours.” So, theoretically, one could be male during homeroom, female during gym class, then male again before he gets on the bus – and the school district is bound to comply every step of the way.
Fighting to let a boy spend the night with your daughter
Tucked away in the letter is a section requiring schools to provide transgender students proper “housing.”
“A school must allow transgender students to access housing consistent with their gender identity,” it states, “and may not require transgender students to stay in single-occupancy accommodations or to disclose personal information when not required of other students.”
The administration's 25-page booklet of proposed policies approvingly cites a local Colorado school district, which says teachers must embrace “the goals of maximizing the [transgender] student’s social integration and equal opportunity to participate in overnight activity and athletic trips, ensuring the [transgender] student’s safety and comfort, and minimizing stigmatization of the [again, transgender] student.”
Follow Ben Johnson on Facebook
The president's adopted hometown of Chicago is more insistent: “In no case should a transgender student be denied the right to participate in an overnight field trip because of the student’s transgender status.”
So, any individual who says he is a member of the opposite sex must be allowed to spend the night in the same room as members of the opposite biological sex for his “social integration” and “comfort.”
Suppose a teenage boy discovers he is “transgender” just in time to spend the night in his girlfriend's hotel room? Or the hotel room of a girl who is decidedly not his girlfriend? He must be allowed to do so without a chaperone, unless there's an adult in every room. Don't forget, under civil rights law, there can be no disparate treatment. If transgender students are chaperoned but “other” girls aren't, that's profiling and could trigger a federal civil rights lawsuit from the social justice warriors in the Obama administration or its like-minded successors.
Obama's already acted to establish unisex bedrooms on field trips
This isn't mere speculation. Three years ago, the Obama administration sided with a transgender female after California's Arcadia Unified School District refused to let her “bunk with [her] buddies” on a seventh grade overnight field trip.
The Obama administration forced a settlement on the school district, which agreed to the teenager's requests for hotel rooms during “overnight events and extracurricular activities on and off campus, consistent with [her] gender identity.”
Obama is now taking this nationwide.
School officials cannot alert the girls' parents that a biological male will be sleeping in their room because, under guidelines quoted by the Obama administration, they can't even tell the boy's parents. “School personnel should speak with the student first before discussing a student’s gender nonconformity or transgender status with the student’s parent or guardian,” it says.
The Arcadia settlement – again, dictated by the Obama administration – says the child's birth sex must be “treated as confidential” by school officials and cannot be disclosed without “express written consent.”
So, your daughter may not know she will be spending the night with a boy until she gets to her hotel room.
Unthinkable as this would be, it hardly scratches the surface. After all, this guidance doesn't just apply to high schools.
Welcome to college! Meet your new roommate
The administration makes clear, “In this letter, the term schools refers to recipients of [f]ederal financial assistance at all educational levels, including school districts, colleges, and universities.”
To drive the point home, Secretary of Education John B. King Jr. said in a press release accompanying the letter, “No student should ever have to go through the experience of feeling unwelcome at school or on a college campus.” (Emphasis added.)
How would a college apply the Obama administration's demand to furnish a transgender student “housing” that conforms to his “gender identity” so that he does not feel “unwelcome” in its dorm rooms?
As demonstrated, the Obama administration's guidance makes gender dependent on the student's assertion and nothing else; it requires students to be housed with members of the sex with which they identify. The letter states that the college cannot tell other students about a transgender student's biology. “Nonconsensual disclosure of...a student’s birth name or sex assigned at birth, could be harmful to or invade the privacy of transgender students,” and Obama warns it could be against the law in the letter.
Some people would argue that not telling a gifted 16-year-old college freshman that her new roommate is a bearded 51-year-old with male pattern baldness and a taste for young ladies violates her privacy.
But according to the booklet, even the potential roommate cannot ask about a transgender person's biology, because “asking personal questions about a person’s body” is a form of harassment.
Thus, under the Obama administration's policies, a man can declare himself a female and be assigned as the year-long roommate of a nubile, possibly underage, co-ed. If the college tells the young lady her roommate is a biological male without his express consent, it could be sued.
And if the young lady objects, she is guilty of stigmatizing and possibly “harassing” the poor man and should probably be sent to sensitivity training – which she can schedule between her therapy sessions to deal with her sexual assault.
All of this is being forced on the nation without one legislator voting to authorize it, or even a public debate to consult the views of the benighted American people. Obama's spokesman, Josh Earnest, insists these policies are being implemented to assure that schools and universities are as “respectful and safe as they can possibly be.” And you can get on board or get sued.
The fact that nothing in Obama's federal guidance forecloses the possibility that a biological woman will become the unwitting, unwilling roommate of a heterosexual biological male - overnight or possibly much longer - tells us how far the president is willing to go to enforce his radical ideology, and how little concern Barack Obama has for anyone who does not share it.
Follow Ben Johnson on Facebook