Stories Behind Transgender Laws

The struggle for rights is ever-present no matter if you’re L, G, B or T. I think the struggle for transgender individuals is harder, in some respects, because their issues are more complicated. People just aren’t ready or willing to accept that others may have been born the wrong sex; that their god or Mother Nature can screw up sometimes. Hell, as we’ve seen this election cycle, there’s a lot of hate that exists beyond the LGBT community.

As soon as Friday, the justices of the Supreme Court could decide if they will hear the appeal in a critical case about whether Gavin Grimm, a transgender male student, can be barred in his Virginia school district from using the boys’ restroom.

The justices first considered whether to take the case on Oct. 14, but took no action, leaving LGBT advocates — and Grimm — in waiting.

The case in question concerns Gloucester County School Board, an Education Department policy, and the widely covered issue of transgender people and bathrooms. But the underlying question of whether existing law — specifically, sex-discrimination bans — protects against gender identity-based discrimination has been moving forward in the courts and administrative agencies for years now.

As the election season clock ticks down to election day, the legal fight over transgender protections is reaching a crescendo. During the Obama administration, officials have undertaken a revolutionary application of those existing laws to affirm the rights of transgender individuals, spurring a rapid shift within the federal government as the culture, too, changes. Meanwhile, as the petition pends before the Supreme Court, there were three federal district court actions on transgender rights this past week alone — one of which led the Justice Department on Thursday afternoon to announce that it will be taking the matter to a federal appeals court.

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