As our Canadian trans cousins come closer to getting a historic bill passed that would enshrine their rights in Canadian law, their right wing opponents have ramped up their efforts to kill it with what else, the bathroom predator lie.
Here's a post from Mercedes Allen about what's transpiring around bill C-389.
As many of you know, Bill C-389 has passed through the committee stage and is moving to Third Reading, possibly in December. Quick facts about C-389 are available in a trifold brochure format. Feel free to print, distribute and use as you see fit.
There are signs that opposition to this bill will mount, in the public forum. Washroom panic seems to be the linchpin of it, and in places where this debate has happened in the US, the washroom panic argument has often failed IF BUT ONLY IF it has been well countered by the facts. We need to be prepared to challenge this argument whenever we hear it. The brochure above does have some good information about washrooms.
Other arguments that have been made by opponents so far:
Argument: Bill C-389 will require teaching "homosexuality and transgenderism" in schools.
Answer: Education about diversity and tolerance would actually be decent and cool -- however, the bill says absolutely nothing about education.
Reference: (the Text of Bill C-389) http://www2.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Docid=3906520&file=4
Argument: "the American College of Pediatricians warned that sexual confusion should not be reinforced"
Answer: This refers to a tract by the ACP called "Facts About Youth." the ACP is a non-authoritative body that screens its membership according to far-right views on abortion and homosexuality, and is therefore not representative of pediatricians in general. It was in fact founded by ex-gay therapists, including Joseph Nicolosi of NARTH and the infamous George Rekers. The American Academy of Pediatricians is the accepted authority, and has responded in emphatic opposition to "Facts About Youth."
Argument: Trans people are "mentally ill" and laws should not have to be written to protect them for that reason.
Answer: The medical establishment recognizes that gender dysphoria is very real and not curable by aversion therapy. In the most extreme cases (transsexualism), the major medical bodies advocate for public health funding of GRS surgery, which is not something it would to if there were no substance to gender dysphoria.
References are everywhere, but a clear example is the AMA statement on GRS: http://www.ama-assn.org/ama1/pub/upload/mm/471/122.doc
Answer part 2: BTW, we in fact DO protect people from discrimination on the basis of mental health status, anyway. It's called disability.
And while people aren't expected to be "out" as trans, be aware that it helps more than anything else when people know someone who is trans, and when they are aware of our stories. This speaks more powerfully than fearmongering and lies ever can.