DeKalb Legislators lead the charge against Obama transgender Directive
May 20, 2016
Southern Torch (3204 articles)
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DeKalb Legislators lead the charge against Obama transgender Directive

Featured image: A recent directive from the Obama administration, combined with the controversial changing of corporate policies, has fueled the debate regarding the rights of transgender individuals to choose the restroom that coincides with their self-identified gender.


By Joseph M. Morgan

joseph@southerntorch.com

DEKALB COUNTY, Ala.—The issue of bathroom use by transgenders has surged to the forefront of social debate nationally in recent weeks. The recent release of the Obama administration’s bathroom directive, ordering local school districts to allow transgender students to use the restrooms of their choice, has incited strong opinions across the nation and the state of Alabama is no exception.

Lawmakers and elected officials at the local, statewide and federal levels have not hesitated to voice their opinions regarding the bold directive from the Obama Departments of Justice and Education. Many conservatives have interpreted the directive as a thinly-veiled threat to withhold federal funding from public schools or universities that refuse to comply and adhere to a greatly expanded and completely new interpretation, application and rewriting of Title IX protections.

Title IX was originally enacted to ensure gender equality in our nation’s public schools, a measure intended to prevent the mistreatment of students based on their sex and provide equal access to funding and resources and fair treatment of all students, both male and female.

The president’s recent directive expands the protections traditionally afforded our schoolchildren under Title IX to include transgender students, with specific orders to allow students who were born male but self-identify as female and vice versa to use the restroom of their choice, regardless of sex.

While six of Alabama’s seven federal lawmakers have weighed in to express their opposition to the expansion of Title IX protections and threat to withhold funding for schools that do not comply, the issue is considered by most experts as a battle best suited to be fought at the state level. The stage is already being set, spurring lawmakers from state legislatures throughout the country who disagree with the measure to launch individual proactive responses to the directive through legislative mechanism.

Two clear leaders, both whom represent DeKalb County, have emerged to spearhead the efforts of those in the Alabama Legislature compelled to respond to the Obama administration’s directive and protect our schoolchildren from what many in our state see as a potentially dangerous new federal policy that could expose boys and girls to members of the opposite sex in our school’s public restrooms on a daily basis.

Alabama Sen. Phil Williams and Rep. Will Ainsworth, both members of the DeKalb County Legislative Delegation, have lent the loudest voices opposing the directive and established themselves as leaders of their cause, each pledging to file legislation against the measure almost immediately upon the release of the administration’s directive on May 13.

“Yesterday I filed the Alabama Privacy Act to begin forming a legislative response to the transgender bathroom issue,” Sen. Williams said. “This morning the Obama Administration took the fight to the next level by issuing a decree to school districts nationwide requiring that they should acquiesce in the face of the issue and make all public school restrooms and locker rooms available in a unisex fashion. My first choice is simply to say “no”, but in building the defenses on any position there must be layered lines of defense – hence the Alabama Privacy Act, which was apparently filed with perfect timing.”

Rep. Will Ainsworth voiced his strong opposition the directive as well. “Like many of you, I am outraged and disgusted by the Obama administration’s threat to withdraw federal funding from states that do not allow so-called “transgender” students to use the bathroom, locker room, and shower facilities of their choosing,” Ainsworth said.

“Alabama will not succumb to Obama’s extremist extortion. I will be introducing a a bill to block Barack Obama’s insane demand from being implemented in Alabama and in the interim call upon the state school board to immediately promulgate a policy clearly requiring public school students to use the facilities that comply with their biological gender.

“Gender is not a choice.  It is a fact that is determined by biology and by God, not by how masculine or feminine you feel when you wake up in the morning.  Dressing like a pirate doesn’t make you a pirate, dressing like an astronaut doesn’t make you an astronaut, and dressing like the opposite sex doesn’t make you a man or a woman.”

Southern Torch

Southern Torch

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