Monday, May 16, 2016

The bathroom wars

I listened to "Here and Now" the other day in which two gentlemen more learned than me discussed the whole problem with bathrooms.  We are, of course, in the midst of the "bathroom wars," which I find absurd for a variety of reasons.

I am a woman and use a women's restroom, which are always, always far too small for the number of women who need to use them, especially in public venues like concert halls or fairgrounds.  I would use (and have used) a men's restroom in order to get my business done and head back to whatever it was I was doing prior to requiring facilities because the line in the ladies room was out of control.  I have never understood women standing in a long line to pee when there is an empty or mostly empty men's restroom sitting.right.there.  The sign says "Men" so we cross our legs and wait and wait.  This is utter inefficiency and drives me bananas.

When I am in a women's restroom, I do not ask my fellow women (who may or may not be biological women) what they are doing in their stalls.
I do not examine them or frisk them or question them.
I ignore them and take care of nature's call.
I would do exactly the same thing with men.

G and M are now 8 and 6.  They are in that foggy area where they are probably too "old" for a women's restroom with me, but they might be a little too "young" to be in a men's restroom alone or without me standing right outside the door, ready to poke my head in and keep them from having a dance party instead of washing their hands.  And I "can't" use a men's restroom, of course.

Sometimes there are "family" restrooms, but there is only one sink and one toilet, and N doesn't want to pee in front of me and her brothers and her dad.  D doesn't want to pee in full view of anyone.  I haven't used a restroom alone in over ten years, so I really don't care who is watching me....stranger or not.  I don't especially want to watch G and M have a "pee race," which is par for the course when there is one toilet and the two of them.

For my family, it would be nice to have a unisex restroom with many stalls that have doors that go from floor to ceiling.  We can all go in together publicly, but all have private individual stalls to do what needs to be done.  I wouldn't have to skulk outside the men's room listening and waiting for my sons.  If D is with N, he could be with her and not have to make arrangements for where to meet afterwards.

I, personally, do not have a problem with unisex restrooms or transgender people using whatever restroom they want.  I would like to use whatever restroom I want....whichever is most convenient for me and/or my family.

It seems there is this aura of danger surrounding unisex bathrooms....that they might induce people to do unhealthy, possibly illicit things in them.

Whether a bathroom is for women, for men or unisex has no effect on someone doing something illicit.  For all I know, every woman I've ever been in a stall next to has been silently shooting up drugs or had her husband/boyfriend in there with her having sex or was secretly stashing money in her offshore account via mobile.  I don't listen for what other people are doing next to me in their stall.  I am busy doing what I need to get done in my stall (which, for the record, has never been drugs or sex).

I keep thinking about this idea of danger....that if someone is different then that person is likely to be deviant.  I realize that transgender doesn't have anything to do with sexual orientation, but not everyone knows this.  They think transgender equates to sexual deviance.

It occurred to me that we erroneously think the devil is going to look odd, different, foul, weird and perverted, but that isn't the way the devil works.  The devil looks tempting, safe, like someone who would never, ever hurt us.  He looks clean, polished, respectable.  He isn't different from us.  He is everything we would trust in an individual.

He is Jerry Sandusky and Dennis Hastert and all the other "normal, respectable, upstanding" men.  The ones I really wouldn't trust in any kind of bathroom.  

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