Thursday, April 14, 2016

Common Sense Part 2: What I Learned from the NC Law Debate.

I wrote a blog the other day about the law in North Carolina concerning transgendered usage of bathrooms/locker rooms.  I asked for help in understanding why the law is so bad - you can read it here.

The result from that blog is why I love social media.

I heard from a variety of sources -those who agreed all the way to those who adamantly disagreed.  I try to stress on my blog that we will engage difficult issues - just be decent and well-mannered.  For the most part I think we accomplished that.

So here is what I learned . . .

*  This is more than just about ideas.
     One of you gave me a scenario that made the whole thing human to me.  I was just thinking of the law instead of a person.  I saw how quickly I was to poke at an idea when it is all about people who are caught in a very difficult situation.  I kept imagining the protesters that are pushing for something when more realistically it is the person who just wants to pee and has to think through where to go in an airport.  The law doesn't seem like it tried to honor this person.  It didn't work with both sides to find a solution.

* The Law has more on its mind than bathrooms.
     I am not completely sure what else is going on - I read the law but it has a lot of legalese.  It seems apparent that some maneuvering is going on regarding minimum wage and the ability to regulate it at a state and local level.  

*  The best way forward is with an open mind.
     It is so easy to push for your way of looking at things.  I started with a question but it was slanted toward, "How hard can this be? Dudes go to the boys room . . ."  It is difficult because we are talking about the dignity of people who associate themselves with the opposite gender.  But open-mindedness goes both ways.  I learned that both sides on this issue are smacking their heads saying, "why don't they get it???"  Look, it is equally ignorant to say that people who don't want their daughter in a locker room with a biological male need to "get over it."  No.  Everyone needs a voice in this.  Just as we have to consider the human dignity of a transsexual, we have to consider the dignity of those who have a real problem with this.  I don't know what it feels like to be a woman in a locker room with a man physically more powerful than me, but I need to value that opinion rather than shout it down.  That is the best way forward.

* Politicians are predators.
     I love my brother's response.  He quoted a study that found that politicians were more likely as a group to do something nefarious with you in the bathroom than the transgendered population.  This both comforted and disquieted me.  If there really is an issue with predators, we should ban politicians from public bathrooms.  Great point.  It is probably why I will never use a public bathroom again.

So thank you for helping me understand the humanity of this issue.  Thank you for being the voice of Christ (regardless of where you are on the faith spectrum) - you have really helped me re-connect this issue to where it needs to be connected.  I was focused too much on an idea.

So can we please sit down with proponents from both sides and draft legislation that will honor both perspectives?  Close-minded people on both sides would not be permitted.  Only those that respect the other side enough to honor each other with an agreement that makes each feel valued.

And that would be how good faith works.

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