The main headline is that right-wing religious fundamentalists plan to distract the Legislature with more anti-transgender paranoia in the 2017 Session:
Dale Bartscher, executive director of the Family Heritage Alliance, said the conservative Christian group approved a draft of a bill last week that would bar transgender students from using the bathroom, locker room or shower room if it doesn’t match their biological gender at birth. The bill calls for schools to offer accommodations for “students with unique privacy needs, including transgender students” [Dana Ferguson, “Conservative Group to Push Transgender Bathroom Bill,” that Sioux Falls paper, 2016.12.21].
But Jack Heyd is organizing a ballot measure, right? Why not just let the voters decide this issue?
[Bartscher: “Quite frankly, we don’t want to see any initiated measure in 2018, we want to see the Legislature approve it and the governor sign it…. This issue is on the front burner for a lot of South Dakotans” [Ferguson, 2016.12.21].
Wait a minute: tax revenues are down, the budget is tight, and the next President’s chief strategist is a Leninist radical who wants to destroy the federal government on which South Dakota depends for 35.8% of its budget, and a lot of South Dakotans think kids choosing which bathroom to belongs on the Legislature’s front burner?
Turn that heat down: donate to Equality South Dakota, donate to the American Civil Liberties Union of South Dakota, donate a little time to contacting your legislators and tell them to focus on the budget and education and stop bullying kids.
And remember: there is no evidence that transgender kids using the bathrooms of their choice poses a danger to anybody.