Hi Donald, thanks for reading and responding. Good points you’ve made. I should’ve included an example like my state (NC) enforcing HB2 back in 2016. You probably already know the history of it, but what started out as trans people seeking (equal) legal protection for their physical safety in public accommodations, only ended with the state’s GOP making a discriminatory, transphobic, (and not to mention, unenforceable) law in which people could legally only use public bathrooms, locker rooms, and changing facilities that matched their “biological sex,” and the state went even further to define biological sex as “the sex listed on a person’s original birth certificate.” This completely erases people who are born intersex, and trans people who can’t or don’t want to (or don’t have the means to) legally change their birth certificates.

That’s always in the back of my mind when I’m talking about the rights of LGBTQ people (but especially trans people), even if I don’t explicitly say it. I guess I feel like I’ve written about HB2 too much already! 😉

2016 was the year I was finally starting to understand what my child was showing and telling me — about their misery with having been AMAB. So HB2 really hit home.

My point in all this is that discriminatory state laws like HB2 do something even worse than allowing public spaces to discriminate. They create unnecessary mass panic in all the transphobic people (who are generally willfully ignorant of everything trans-related to begin with), and even in the good, decent people who might otherwise consider themselves LGBTQ allies.

If they are not extremely familiar with trans issues (and the average American is not), then they may suddenly find themselves ruled by fear over debunked myths and “urban legends.” Which then causes them to lash out at trans people in general — directly or indirectly — and it leads the average American to feel they have cart blanche to discriminate against the trans community, perpetuate trans myths and lies, and direct misguided anger at them. Since we all live, work, and play with these people daily, we all likely know someone — a landlord, an employer, a medical provider, etc. — who ends up denying goods or services to the trans community, as a result of deeply ingrained transphobia, which is given new life with laws like HB2. It’s a vicious cycle that’s all wound up in tight knot.

Thanks again for taking the time to read and comment.

Dismantler of gender norms. Political news junkie. TikTok aficionado. Mom of 3. Work seen/heard @ HuffPost, Scary Mommy, NPR, SiriusXM, LTYM, TIFO podcast, etc.

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